A professional catering company is more than simply a business that provides food. Caterers provide experience, security, knowledge, expertise and the understanding that every situation that might arise is going to be handled with skill and attention to detail.
I don’t want to pick on other food establishments who 香港到會 provide some catering services. I’m sure some of the thousands, if not millions of café’s, coffee shops, deli’s, pizza restaurants, takeaways and fish and chip shops who provide catering services to bolster their income do quite a good job. However, to get the job done properly and safely, the best option is to engage a professional caterer. However, a distinction should be drawn between a café etc that provides some catering and a catering company that has a café etc. There is a difference and that difference should be noted.
Experience: There is no substitute for experience. A professional caterer might do large party catering, corporate catering and wedding catering every day of the week. With this type of experience a real catering company would have encountered and overcome all kinds of obstacles and have got their operating method down so it is finely tuned. If a caterer is in contact with clients every day, then the professional catering company would be able to offer the best advice, customer service, catering suggestions and be able to answer ALL of the clients’ questions. A café might only be able to provide a small catering function once a week and their experience will be reflective of that fact.
Skill: A catering company will have the skills to provide you with the best food for your function. Cooking gourmet food for one hundred people in a restaurant or café utilises a completely different skill set than cooking for one hundred people from a camp kitchen in a field with no electricity. A professional catering company will have systems in place, methods, procedures and most importantly, checklists, to ensure that the catering event goes off without any problems. There is no chance of “popping to the shop” if your caterer has forgotten something in a remote location. Who do you want to be catering for you, the caterer who caters for functions like your every week, or a caterer who only does it once a year?
Industry Expertise: A catering company will work with all kinds of industry professionals, all of the time. A professional catering company will work closely with photographers, staff hire companies, equipment hire companies, videographers, luxury car hire, flowers, wedding cakes and all the usual well known things that you need. But a professional catering company will also know about services and products that you might not have even thought of, dancing lessons, free wedding websites among others. It would be very unlikely that you would get this kind of service from your local ‘mum n pop’ style café.
Safety: Food safety is extremely important! A professional will take food safety very seriously and it likely to have a refrigerated commercial vehicle in which to transport the food, or other contingencies in place to ensure that your catering is the absolute best quality it can be when it arrives at your event.
When food is a part of your fundraising event you must choose a catering service wisely. How your guests remember your fundraiser will greatly depend on what they thought of the food and service. Those memories, good or bad, will influence them when it comes time to think about attending your next fundraising event.
Advance preparation is the key. Many venues that you select will have a restricted list of catering services that may be used. Some may insist you use their in-house catering service. Others may have no restrictions at all. No matter which position you find yourself in, you must allow sufficient time to explore your catering options before you make your choice.
When you have many catering choices I recommend that you keep your notes in a centralized location. A notebook with pockets or an expandable file folder would be ideal. Besides keeping yourself organized, it will allow you to include this valuable knowledge with your event information which should be passed down to next years event organizer.