FIND A FARMER
The purpose of the Farm to Chef Directory is to link chefs/restaurant owners interested in sourcing local food with farmers interested in servicing local restaurants.
What To Expect As A Chef *
How to make the experience a great one
Commit – Be reliable and consistent in your buying relationships. Buy what you say you will buy, and buy consistently while a product is in season.
Maintain communication - Be honest. Taste the product and tell them what you plan to do with it. If you’re unhappy with a product, tell the producer why. And request varieties you’re interested in. Communication is key.
Buying – A few rules of thumb when it comes to buying expectations. Plan to pay full price (the praise you’ll get from your customers for the flavor boost will reimburse you ten-fold). Also, give as much advance notice as possible of what you need, and establish a routine for phone calls, orders, and questions.
Delivery – Establish a delivery schedule so both parties know what is coming and when. This will enhance productivity and convenience for both parties.
Be flexible – Use what is fresh and in season. Your customers will appreciate it!
Cultivate trust – Mutual trust is a must-have for a successful relationship. Always remain patient, understanding that you both share similar goals: a satisfied customer and a profitable business.
Billing – Discuss the preferred payment method up front so that there are no surprises, then establish a system and follow through. Be prepared to pay either COD or net 7, as this is a preferred system for many farmers.
Education – Continue to learn about products that are available and challenge your staff to do the same. Visit the farm or farmers' markets to stay current on what is in season and for new ideas on product preparation.
* Source: Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project