4 Things To Get Right When You Set Up A Catering Van


4 Things To Get Right When You Set Up A Catering Van

When you’re setting up a catering van, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement that beginning a new business brings. The long hours and the hundreds of jobs that need doing can feel overwhelming, but you often get the energy you need from the buzz and excitement of making those early months a success.

All too often, however, it can be easy to overlook some of the basics when you’re putting so much energy in to getting things working day by day. So as a quick reminder, here are four things to get right when you set up a catering van.

It’s important to limit your menu. It can be tempting to feel as though you have to cater for a wide variety of tastes on your menu, but by attempting to cover all the bases, you run the risk of limiting your potential profits and ending up with far too much stock that you can’t use.  It is always the case that a more limited menu, sensibly balanced with a range of achievable and popular key dishes is your best option.  It’s also sensible to look at dishes that can chare ingredients, even though the dishes themselves are different. This will help you limit your stock and allow you to buy more ingredients in volume, for a better price.

You should also make sure that you research your suppliers and take your time and get your supply chains as streamlined and as reliable as possible. Your business can’t flourish if you don’t have access to the stock you need, so building up long-lasting relationships with suppliers is a sensible plan. Developing these relationships also means that you are able to get the best deals you can on the products you need, and also that if problems arise on either side, they can be resolved in an environment of trust rather than uncertainty. Sometimes you need all the certainty you can get!

The other mistake that entrepreneurs often make is to neglect to factor in the running costs they’ll encounter in the prices of the products they sell. You’ve got to add enough of a surplus to your mark-up to take account of expenses like staffing and supplies but also those hidden expenses like fuel, maintenance and wear.

Running a catering van is a wonderful and fulfilling challenge, but it’s so much easier to enjoy it and concentrate on creating a great product when you know you’ve got the basics under control.

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