Food analytics is the ability to analyse anything and everything to do with the food production process – thought unimaginable a decade ago; and now something that should be incorporated into any chef’s decision making. Purchasing activity, recipe pricing, recipe success, inventory management, allergen control and many other metrics can be considered.
The foundation of this thought process forms a natural path to the realm of Big Data. Since becoming digitised, every component of the farm to fork process is a data point; feeding information to all stakeholders, facilitating their decision making and generating an increasingly predictable data bank. Therefore, the finance director, chef, operations director (and anyone else finds themselves crunching this information) benefits from more readily available, accurate and reliable data.
Futuristic technologies that make up the likes of Big Data and the Internet of Things (IoT – the concept of devices communicating with each other – e.g. your fridge tells your phone to inform you to buy some milk) will soon play their part in the hospitality industry, creating even smoother workflows.
A Simple Data Standard
Whilst old procedures become digital, the next step is simple consolidation so all the devices/data points are capable of interacting with each other. The ePOS system should be able to communicate with the stock management system. A simple use case is: in the situation of a sudden spike in ice lolly demand > the ePOS should forecast demand > stock system should check inventory levels > in the event of short supply > the stock management system should communicate with the procurement system to ensure the order is ready to go.
A step further would be for the CPU to communicate the weather forecast, local events and any other external variables that could be considered before forecasting the level of demand that a restaurant may come to expect on any given day. In this scenario, the kitchen can factor this into the quantity of food they produce. As the databank grows, the forecast becomes more reliable.
We are constantly looking at how the procurement industry may change, for the good. With that we have some exciting plans for the next 18 months. If you are interested to find out more and discuss your needs get in touch.