In order to streamline kitchen operations and keep food costs down, every operator is trying to find ways to simplify their menu.
“For every type of restaurant—quick-serve, to fast casual, to fine dining—menu optimization has been a key for many months now,” says Todd Michael, senior director of the foodservice division at Knouse Foods. “Brands are taking the products that don’t sell as well and consolidating to help recoup some of the profits they’ve lost over the past year.”
Still, it’s important to find on-trend items that will appeal to a large portion of diners. Picking which products remain on the menu, Michael says, requires an honest assessment of how much labor each takes to prep and then create, and the margin that is achieved when the item is served to the customer. Another consideration is how versatile the item is.
“Operators have to identify and then use products that can perform during different dayparts,” says Bob Fisher, vice president of marketing at Knouse Foods. “If it’s a versatile menu item or product, it gives the restaurant less to order, and makes their lives so much easier.”
Fisher and Michael agree that a great alternative to other popular quick-service sides, such as french fries or chips, is Musselman’s Apple Sauce—a shelf stable, pre-packaged product that saves a restaurant crucial storage space, as well as labor. Consider that it takes exactly one employee to grab the apple sauce container off of a shelf and place it into a bag and hand it to the customer as opposed to other sides, which take several people in the kitchen preparing, cooking, and packaging orders up. The lack of kitchen complexity is a major reason why operators are turning to Musselman’s Apple Sauce as a foolproof way to simplify their menu.
Furthermore, Musselman’s Apple Sauce appeals to a wide array of diners. Kids will love it, and parents will approve, Fisher says, adding that many adults enjoy eating apple sauce as well.
“We always talk about the duality of our target demographic,” Fisher says. “Kids ages 4 through 12 really do love it, but so do adults who are looking for something a little more healthy than a side of french fries.”
Another type of diner that enjoys Musselman’s Apple Sauce is one that appreciates U.S.-grown produce, adding to the idea that the product can help simplify a menu without losing loyal customers.
“Our quality is different, and that’s because of what makes us unique, which is that we’re a grower-owned organization,” Fisher says. “Our product is 100-percent American-grown apples, and our farmers are truly invested in the company. They live and breathe growing apples specifically for Musselman’s Apple Sauce.”
For more information on how to simplify your menu with Musselman’s Apple Sauce, visit the Knouse Foods website.