You want to create a broad array of crowd-pleasing craveable fare quickly and consistently, but in today’s difficult labor market, it can be a challenge. Labor is one of operators’ top three challenges across all segments. In fact, two-thirds of operators don’t have enough hourly cooks, and one-third have noticed a drop in the total level of culinary skill among the kitchen staff.1 Are you among them?
If so, convenient prepared products can help mitigate the skill shortage while still allowing you to offer the dishes and flavors that your customers look for. Here are three ways you can maximize labor-savings with versatile selections.
1. Source fully cooked products
Imagine the ways you can broaden your menu with minimal labor if you switch your purchasing specs to products like fully cooked, sous-vide-style chicken quarters; fully cooked diced chicken breast; or oven-roasted sliced turkey breast. The potential time and labor savings of fully cooked products are probably why nearly a third (32%) of operators find that fully prepared products are more appealing.1
These convenience products might be the way of the future, considering that 17% of labor-challenged operators plan to transition to more premade products, while 10% have already shifted more toward fully prepared items in the last six months.1
We offer fully cooked items like PERDUE® HARVESTLAND® TENDERREADY® NO ANTIBIOTICS EVER, SOUS-VIDE STYLE FULLY COOKED CHICKEN QUARTERS, as well as HALVES, make crafting consistent, quality dishes simple to prepare. Tender chicken is marinated and roasted in a sealed bag to lock in the flavor and moisture, reducing labor and improving food safety. That’s a win-win.
2. Switch to frozen and pre-seasoned products
With the consistent quality of frozen products, you can expand your menu without additional labor. For example, the wildly popular crispy chicken sandwich seems out of reach for many operators with a limited kitchen skill set due to the labor intensiveness of breading chicken. However, we’ve made it simple with our new chicken breast filet products, which are ready to go from bag to table in minutes.
One of these recently launched frozen solutions is PERDUE® NO ANTIBIOTICS EVER, Ready To Cook Breaded Spicy Chicken Breast Filets. For hot chicken sandwich lovers, the spice meter reaches 2,000 on the Scoville scale—between mild and medium, which is comparable to a poblano/ancho pepper.
For operators who would like a non-spicy option, also available is PERDUE® NO ANTIBIOTICS EVER Ready To Cook Breaded Homestyle Chicken Breast Filets. In both cases, the chicken breasts are pre-breaded and pre-marinated, which lowers the potential number of ingredients in house while also reducing the amount of labor needed to prep, cook and finish it. You simply fry it.
In addition to labor-saving convenience, frozen products offer ease of storage and handling, which may explain why 15% of operators have shifted more toward frozen products and 33% find frozen products more appealing.1
A few of our other labor-saving frozen solutions are breaded boneless chicken wings made of breast meat chunks; oven-roasted chicken breast strips that are marinated with natural herbs and spices; and diced turkey cured dark meat perfect for salads as a pork alternative.
3. Leverage versatility along with advantage claims
The abundance of frozen and/or fully cooked and pre-seasoned poultry allows you to quickly add new dishes, stretching the menu with minimal labor. The versatile products work within a number of trends, whether that be comfort foods, global flavors or better-for-you fare.
Meanwhile, you can drive profits with convenient products when you source poultry with the powerful advantage claims consumers care about. Most consumers support the higher cost restaurants charge for the items. The top three claims that consumers say they are willing to pay more for are clean label (76%), no antibiotics ever (73%) and humanely raised (67%).2
Several of our brands wear quality claims on their label, such as PERDUE® NO ANTIBIOTICS EVER Turkey and Chicken and PERDUE® HARVESTLAND® poultry with such claims as no antibiotics ever; 100% vegetarian fed; raised to a higher standard of animal care; hatched, raised and harvested in the USA; clean label; and no-hormones, steroids or growth promoting drugs.
When you leverage versatile, labor-saving poultry, you not only mitigate labor challenges, but you can drive profits with higher prices on premium-quality offerings.
- Datassential One Table 2022 Report
- Datassential/Perdue Premium Poultry Claims Consumer Research Report, May 2022