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In recent years, the food industry has witnessed a significant rise in the popularity of ready-to-cook foods for bars and restaurants. This trend has caught the attention of many establishments due to the potential to save time and cost, whilst maintaining quality. In this blog, we explore why this trend is gaining momentum and how you can make the most of it in your business.

Firstly – it’s about time and cost efficiency

One of the main reasons behind the increase in demand for ready-to-cook foods is that it’s a significant time and cost saving. With the rise in costs across the board, thanks to inflation, it’s a fantastic solution for many pubs, restaurants, hotels, schools and catering businesses. By utilising pre-prepared ingredients and/or partially cooked meals, you can streamline your operations and reduce the time required for food preparation. This allows you to serve your diners more efficiently; especially during peak hours. In the long run, it also increases customer satisfaction, which is a huge benefit for businesses.

In addition to this, these meals also contribute to cost savings. By minimising food waste and optimising ingredients usage, you can significantly reduce your expenses. Eateries who have embraced the ready-to-cook options most likely will have reduced their overall food production expenses.

“47% of the 10,034 food and beverage businesses surveyed by ONS said that suppliers, production or both had been affected by increases in energy prices in 2022. As a result of price rises in the industry – 18.7% had to change suppliers” – taken from FoodStars UK, a report published in June 2023.

What this doesn’t tell you is if they were buying all the ingredients to make foods in-house or purchasing read-to-cook options. Either way, we know that businesses have had to reconsider ways in which to operate more effectively.

Secondly – it’s about quality!

Of course, we all want food that’s good quality, and contrary to common misconceptions, ready-to-cook meals don’t compromise on quality and taste. In fact, they often provide a consistent and reliable experience. Here at Cooper Foods, we invest heavily in research and development to ensure that our ready-to-cook range still provides high-standard, nutritional value food. We work hard to provide the best ingredients, so we know that everything on our menu will be top quality on your menu.

The options

If you’re looking for another reason to embrace ready-to-cook foods, it has to be the diversified menu options. You can offer a wider range of dishes without compromising on quality or increasing the complexity of kitchen operations! Are you after a mouth-watering dish containing the finest British beef? Fancy a truly tasty and fresh quiche Lorraine and salad? Treat yourself to a slice of Treacle Tart or Bramley Apple Pie. Whatever it may be – we’ve got you covered!

These options and flexibility allow you to cater to various dietary requirements and accommodate the evolving tastes of your customers.

Is it time to embrace ready-to-cook?

We can see that the rise of ready-to-cook foods in bars, restaurants, cafes, etc, is driven by the desire for time and cost efficiency whilst maintaining high-quality standards.

“64% of Brits say local places to eat and drink are important in building a sense of community” – taken from Open Table 2023.

This is just one of many reasons to continue providing a great dining experience for your customers. The demand for a good range of food options is high, no matter your industry, so it’s worth considering how you can be on trend with ready-to-cook meals. By embracing these meal options, you have the potential to save money, increases customer satisfaction, and optimise your business operations – and, to gain a competitive edge in the ever-evolving food industry.

    Head to our website to apply for an account if you’re not already a customer, or give our customer service team  a call on 01264 321050.