Happy New Year!  It is hard to believe that Summer 2021 is less than six months away.  Currently, the food and food related supply chain is still in the process of recovering.  Distributors and manufacturers are reporting improvements, but we are still expecting inventory issues as the summer approaches.  To this extent, we wanted to help guide you with some suggested planning dates below.  Please note that we expect each state and/or local authority to have specific guidelines that will need to be met.

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January/February – “Planning Stage”


  • Menus – Review your previous menu. Consider meals and necessary labor/products.  If you have not already, consider setting up an H&H Menu Review
  • Service Style – How are you going to serve? Cafeteria, family style, hybrid?  Equipment needs?
  • Communal condiments vs p/c (portion-controlled) vs single serve
  • Service Options –
    • Switch to disposables vs reusable plates, bowls, silverware, etc. Cost vs Staff impacts.  Looking to compare costs?  Click here to Ask Us for our Disposables Calculator.


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  • Begin to place orders for:
    • Kitchen/Janitorial Disposables
    • Kitchen Equipment
    • PPE
    • Hand Soap and Hand Sanitizer


  • Initial deliveries of supplies ordered
  • Finalize service style
  • Schedule outside contractors needed to open kitchen (i.e. gas company, hood cleaning company, fire inspection, refrigeration, etc.)


  • Place Opening food orders (i.e. frozen, grocery)
  • Schedule deliveries for at least 1-2 weeks prior to staff arrival

Important Notes

  • Review current inventory for expiration dates. Assume that most of your current products will not be usable if you did not operate in Summer 2020.
  • With the prospect of staff not being able to leave, you will need to budget for additional food costs associated with an evening snack/4th meal and feeding them on days off.


A copy of this email is available as a PDF below.