A little food waste is to be expected when running a food service department for patients staying in any healthcare institutions. However, with statistics exposing that fact that an estimated 40 percent of food in the United States is wasted, it is the healthcare leaders who must be willing to set the example. In fact, implementing various cost-saving strategies may even save your healthcare institution up to 6 percent on your overall food-purchasing budget!
Here’s how you can get started:
Be Strategic About Your Menu Planning & Food Purchasing
If you’re looking to contain your costs, your kitchen is the first place you need to start. Simply by making small changes to your menus, such as tailoring your menus to include only the most affordable ingredients available each season, or developing menus “that can repurpose unused food products the following day,” you can potentially save hundreds of thousands of dollars every year.
Invest In The Right Technology
Any technology designed to streamline your food service operations and save you money both upfront and in subsequent food waste reduction is going to be well worth your while. At Vision Software, for instance, our groundbreaking suite of software applications is designed to connect every facet of your food service department to ensure patient health and satisfaction throughout your facility, prevent food-related errors, boost your HCAHPS scores, and so much more.
Savings Beyond Mealtimes
What is something you can do to cut costs for your food service department that has nothing to do with preparing meals and menus? Thinking outside the box will allow for the most creative cost containing solutions! Newer, higher efficiency appliances might be just what you need to save more money over time.
Made-To-Order & On-Demand Options
While it may be tempting to prep large quantities of food in the interest of saving time, the truth is you never know what your patients are going to want, or how much they will need until it’s time to eat. By making everything ahead of time, all you’re doing is ensuring whatever doesn’t get used or eaten is wasted. On the other hand, making food to order ensures every patient and guest gets exactly what they want, when, which means they are much more likely to consume everything provided – equating to less waste and so on. This type of “on-demand” service is not only better for patients, but it’s been shown to also dramatically reduce food waste and associated costs.
Address Food Insecurity
With countless Americans facing hunger daily, there are plenty of opportunities to offer leftover products, meals, and supplies to those who truly need it. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your scraps and come up with new recipes that you can share with those in need.
Reach out to our food service software specialists at Vision Software today for more information on optimizing your food service operations, reducing food waste, and saving big without compromising your quality of care. Call 629.777.8989, or fill in the free consultation form in the sidebar, to learn more about how Vision Software can positively impact the lives of the patients and visitors you service every day.