What You’ll Need to Run a Catering Business

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There are various ways in which the pandemic has created conditions for new catering businesses to thrive. Many people have taken the chance to switch careers and pursue their true passions, while extra time at home pushed more to test their skills in the kitchen to the point that Britain ran out of key ingredients. Delivery services have boomed meanwhile as consumer habits have shifted. 

Starting any business still requires a great deal of research, planning and hard work however, and there are several key ingredients you’ll need to make yours a success. Get an idea of what your catering business should have below.   

A unique menu 

What’s your trademark dish? You’ll need to come up with a menu that encourages customers to tuck in while featuring dishes that can be easily recreated, transported and served on the move.   

Consider your target audience and what they’d be tempted by. If you want to get in at weddings for example, classic dishes or elaborate desserts could be perfect. Or can you appeal to office workers on their lunch breaks with warm soups and sandwiches?  

Catering essentials 

Your home kitchen equipment is unlikely to cut it, so you’ll need to make a shopping list. You’ll want scalable food preparation equipment including large pans and trays, as well as portable hobs and ovens depending on what you’ll be cooking up and where.  

Make sure to maintain your equipment appropriately too. Sharpening stones will help to keep your knives sharp and speedy, while electrical appliances should be PAT tested regularly.   

Transportation 

How do you plan to get your ingredients, equipment and staff from A to B? You’re likely to need a large car or van of some sorts that will keep everything safe and secure on the road.  

If you plan to operate solely on a delivery basis, you could outsource transportation to local delivery drivers.  

Serving dishes or packaging 

This step will also depend on the type of catering you’re doing, but presentation matters when serving food of any kind. You could rent serving dishes, invest in eco-friendly disposable trays or even use the equipment of the venue you’re working at.  

If yours will be a full-service catering operation, you might want to factor in table decorations too.  

A customer base 

The most important element of any successful business is its customers. How will you appeal to punters and build relationships?  

Having a strong social media presence is essential in the food industry, while setting up a basic website will allow you to take orders and bookings seamlessly. Encourage customer reviews to provide social proof to others too. 

Could the catering industry be right for you? Factor in these elements to make sure you aren’t left with a bad taste in your mouth.  

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