It may be time for a menu change.
If you haven´t been locked in your linen, room or the past week you probably know by now that the freeze in California has proved fatal to numerous crops that make their way to menus across the country.
Oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruit, avocados, artichokes and numerous other California gems have succumb to the six straight nights of below freezing temperatures.
Skyrocketing prices will have an adverse affect on food cost, possibly throughout the first quarter of the year. Combined with the fact for many, the first quarter is the slowest of the year and the outcome could be devastating. There are some solutions to some of the problems.
Order a few cases of lemons and limes today. Prices have jumped already but as supply diminishes, prices will increase dramatically.
Juicing oranges will increase in price substantially. Even though Florida supplies oranges, the supply has still been depleted and the demand will remain high. If you have fresh squeezed orange juice on the menu make sure to either adjust your price of get ready for a loss in that department.
Lettuces are not ruined yet, as the new crop was just being planted. However, in the next few days the lettuce producers could jump on the freeze bandwagon and go for the price increase.
It may be time to analyze your menu and remove items affected by the freeze. Artichokes- boiled, broiled, steamed and stuffed have to go and a few other items may fall into that category.
If you choose to not replace the item, get ready for a hit on the bottom line. However, you deal with the freeze depends on your restaurant philosophy, but remember, pay attention to the increases. If you don´t they could make your second quarter chilling.