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Per Person vs. Per Pan

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hello -

I'm new to this board, so I hope I ask this question correctly and give enough information.  My husband and I own a BBQ food truck.  Business is great and we are getting tons of catering requests (which was  not our original plan of operation).  We had been using a per pan pricing structure, but my husband wants to transition to a tiered per person pricing strategy (tiers are based on what meats they choose).  For the life of me, I cannot understand how to explain per person pricing to a customer, nor do I get how much food that means we prepare.  If a person had come to me in the past and said they had 30 people to feed and they wanted ribs (3 bones per person), pulled pork and baked beans, for example.  I would tell them they needed 8 slabs of ribs (12 bones per slab), a full pan of pulled pork, and a full pan of baked beans (based on how many servings I know are in the pan.  But when it's a per person price, how does that work??  I'm smart - I have two degrees - but it just doesn't make sense to me, and if it doesn't make sense to me, I cannot explain it to a client.  It makes perfect sense to my hubby, but I'm hoping someone can give me a 'hooked on phonics' understanding of per person pricing, and if it is applicable to a bbq business??  

 

Thanks for your KIND help :)

post #2 of 6
Basically you need to figure out a set price per serving and figure out how much your going to charge say 12.95 pp for a basic buffet when someone calls you and says I need food for a 100 then you would charge them the 12.95 pp and supply them with how many pans of food you project it would take say 4 pans of Mac n cheese because they can fees 25 people each. Some people see it as a way to save money others just want it because if its a party your catering they don't expect you to run out of food if the guest eat more than normal when I'm catering I always make more to have on hand just in case whereas if they ordered 4 pans of Mac for 100 people but ran out at 75 then there screwed but if they pay per person then they expect it to not run out.
post #3 of 6

Most caterers charge on a 'per guest' schedule----

You will need to start keeping track of average consumption of the various menus for that to work well .

 

Meats and side dishes -----

 

However, if your bulk,pan pricing has been working--I can not see a problem continuing with that method.

 

With 'per person' pricing---the ratios fall apart when the guest count is low---

 

with 80 guest,for example, you will have the average number of big eaters and light eaters--so you numbers will be safe.

 

If the guest count is 25--and all of them are construction workers----you just might run out of food ,if you use the same quantities as your 80 guest party.

post #4 of 6
Redundant post.
OBTW welcome to Chef Talk.

mimi
post #5 of 6


Take the way you do it now lets say you figure their total amount of pans and racks and that figure comes to  $180.00 now divide that by 30  which is $6.00 per person and that's your price.

Now add on for delivery and service and rentals if any

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

Reply
post #6 of 6

This is a good opportunity for you to take the time to actually figure out what pp. means to you.  You need to explain to yourself and then make sure there is an understanding with the client.

 

In general, on menus,  more vague measurements like pp. or per slab are accompanied with more objectives like "a generous 8oz portion of pulled pork" or "six ribs from the large side or seven from the small."

 

You might want to actually state specifically what per pan means and make it known.  Like 10lbs, feeds 10-15 people, or eight hungry Texans.

 

Perhaps the most important is not the quantities but the communications between you and the client.

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