The last time you went to dine out, remember the desert you left on the plate because you were too full or the last piece of chicken that your kid could not finish? – all such leftovers get dumped in the landfill.
According to WRAP (the Waste and Resources Action Program), the food sector produces around 400,000 tons of avoidable food waste. Furthermore, the UN concludes that universal food wastage accounts for 8% of global greenhouse gases. With more than millions of people in our country who face difficulties procuring food, the amount of food wastage is a significant problem to deal with.
If you want to reduce food waste in your restaurant, this article is for you. Because if your restaurant learns to reduce food waste, it will increase their business money in the long run.
What Is Restaurant Portion Control?
Portion Control is a global approach to reducing food wastage. It refers to the amount of food served to you and the number of ingredients in a particular dish. Thus, it maintains consistency in the taste, quality, quantity, and amount of food. Portion Control is significant as it helps manage customers’ expectations from any particular restaurant and can return to enjoying the same taste and flavor.
How To Measure Portions?
The measurement of portions depends on the specified tools you are using. The restaurants use specific portion control tools in various shapes and sizes. Some of the most important or common tools are food dishes, poodles, and portion scales.
To portion foods like mashed potatoes, corn, etc., portion spoons and dishes are used by fast-casual restaurants. Even single-serving sachets of ketchup or juices are great restaurant food portion control examples. You can also cut other expenditures of your restaurant by buying chairs, tables, etc. from a dining table wholesale manufacturer.
Tips to Control Portion Size :
Below are some listed best practices which you can follow to control Portions
Buying the right amount of raw material is the first and foremost step to reducing food wastage in your restaurant. Always keep track of the ingredients in your kitchen; this will help you buy the appropriate amount of ingredients from the market. It is very important to think about the ‘Product Yield’ of an item and the number of portions it will serve. You can also use partly-prepared or ready-made items from the market.
Formulate A Standardized Recipe
Standard Recipes are essential for any restaurant business. It is a set of instructions strictly followed by the cooks to prepare and present their dishes in the restaurant. Standardized recipes control costs and quantities. It controls the portion size and provides high-quality food items consistently. It also contains the portion to be served to know how many people can be served from one prepared dish beforehand. Standard recipes include:
- Serving Size
- Recipe Yield
- Utensils and Equipment Used
- Weight of every ingredient
Portion Control Plating
The first trick is to use smaller plates. Swap those plates nearly the size of a car tire and start using standardized plates or even smaller than that. It will make your staff serve less amount of food. Also, the customers will not waste much food as it will be just enough to fulfill their desires and taste buds.
Writing down the plating instructions also helps in controlling food portion size. It eliminates guesswork and gives the chefs a better idea of what the actual dish should look like. You can also cut costs by buying disposable goods, for instance, a wholesale disposable food container.
Get Good At Measuring
For every restaurant, understanding measurements are very crucial. This ensures in production the same consistent dishes that just don’t let your customers go away. Measuring spoons are very necessary for the kitchens. Also, go for measuring cups that can determine quantities in pints, ounces, and quarts. There are 3 ways to measure your food ingredients. They are:
- Measurement by Weight- Rely blindly on your food scales. In this, you measure your ingredients using a scale.
- Measurement by Volume- This requires measuring cups, ladles, and spoons to measure ingredients.
- Measurement by Count- In this, you just count the number of elements to be used or served.
Well Trained Staff
The changes made while implementing Portion Control might be too much for your staff. All your efforts will be a waste if your staff cannot execute the proper measurements and ideas. So, it is good to hold training sessions to ensure that everyone understands what and how to handle standard measures. Make sure that your chefs are trained enough to keep the aesthetics in mind while controlling the portion size.
Offer What Your Customer Wants
Having a proper measure does give cost benefits and reduces wastage. Offer your customers what they want. Below are some examples of how to do it-
- Offer smaller amounts to your customers
- Side dishes are a must. Keep a swapping option in the menu
- Always offer water before serving the food.
- Offer bags to let the customers carry the leftovers with them.
You can also use unique ideas to decorate your restaurant and attract customers. For this, you can buy tail lights and spare auto parts from tail light manufacturers, and use them as decorative items. Following these tips, your restaurant will be able to reduce your food cost and ensure less wastage of food. Portion control is essential for the consistency of your products. All the best! Go, satisfy your customers with ‘better-sized portions.’