Its no secret that most restaurants use frozen or prepackaged food, but more and more restaurants now are turning to fresh food. The average commute for commercially grown produce in the United States in 1500 miles, boosting the need for fruits and veggies that are chemically engineered to withstand travel. As a restaurant owner, it never hurts to support your local economy while also procuring better, fresher food. It’s a win-win! In an age where everyone is worried about what they’re putting into their bodies, it’s especially essential for restaurants to be using the freshest ingredients they can find.
What looks good, usually tastes good and since customers eat with their eyes first, this is noteworthy. Fresh ingredients taste better; anyone with a garden or local farmers market can tell you that. The best way to maximize freshness is to buy local and eat right away, which more restaurants are turning to with daily or seasonal menus. While not every ingredient is always in season, this allows for a rotating menu depending on the season. Cooking with the seasons and product availability can be difficult, but its also an excellent way for patrons to try new food and make it their new favorite. Fresh foods deliver a bright, lively experience that leaves your customer feeling better than when they came. Restaurants that switch to fresher ingredients will reap the rewards just by how much better their food tastes.
Loss of Nutrients
Nutrients in fruits and veggies start to deplete once they are harvested and move across the country. Almost all processed food has added preservatives to prolong their shelf life, which changes the way the food tastes and the chemical balance in the food. These types of foods use additives such as dyes, hormones, artificial flavors, and sugars, and these counteract the natural nutrients in the foods already. Chemicals that are unknown to the body prolong the digestive process and keep actual nutrients from being digested. Using local food reduces the amount of necessary travel, which also decreases the number of preservatives needed in the food.
Today restaurants are going beyond buying fresh, local produce; they’re purchasing local beef, seafood, poultry, and dairy products. Now everything a restaurant sells is straight from the farm, with organic products and free-range meat and poultry. There is even hyper-local food now, for the most extreme of freshness. Hyper-local refers to food grown in-house, like a restaurant garden.
Fresh ingredients are better in taste and nutrients, so make sure your favorite restaurants are making the right choices with their ingredients!