Food Consultants For The Food Service Industry

Food consultants are specialized experts in food quality, safety and hospitality who advise food service industry professionals and companies on the enhancement and growth of their foodservice operations. Food consultants can work for restaurants, food manufacturers, hospitals or any other foodservice facility. These consultants can provide their professional services at a central location or as part of a food facility's operations. Food facilities can save money by consolidating their food consulting functions and hire a food facility consultant to oversee those functions. This allows them to focus on food-related activities, such as marketing, customer service and sales.
The main job of the food consultant is to improve restaurant productivity. He/she assesses current procedures and develops improved methods that meet or exceed the required standards set by the Food Service Review Council (FSCR). In addition, a food consultant helps restaurant owners and operators identify areas of food-related concern and resolve them. A food-related worry may be that an ingredient is not suitable for a particular food or that a method of cooking is risky for food. Another Food Consultant's job is to help restaurant owners find replacement ingredients that will solve problems or that will replace a discontinued ingredient.
Food consultants are expected to have thorough knowledge of all food-processing steps and processes, including information about government safety requirements. However, food consulting experience is also necessary to ensure that a food consultant possesses the required skill set or specialized training to handle food-related issues. To prepare for a food consulting career, food consultants need to learn the basics of food preparation and management. They need to have extensive knowledge in sanitation methods, including hand washing and sanitizing procedures.
Food consulting firms usually hire individuals with strong managerial and business skills. They can either run their own restaurant or operate a consulting firm that specializes in a particular restaurant or industry. In either case, food consultants possess many of the same skills as restaurant and hospitality managers.
While working as a consultant, food consultants are expected to develop leadership skills to help the company they work for improve customer satisfaction and quality of operations. Internally, consultants need to demonstrate good communication skills, interpersonal skills, and the ability to coordinate various staff functions. Depending on the type of restaurant or industry they are employed in, consultants also must have knowledge about health and safety practices.
Many food consultants start out as employees of a food production company or another company specializing in the manufacture of food products. The consulting company provides on-the-job training to get food consultants up to speed on all of the responsibilities and requirements of food production. Once employed, food consultants can choose to work for themselves or for another company. Food consultants who work for themselves need to keep up on all of the current promotions and marketing strategies used by other departments within the company in order to keep their position.
Food consultants may choose to start their own business or work for an existing food industry consulting firm. Both options require additional research and licensing for food consultants to become self-employed. The Foodservice Inspection Department of the U.S Food & Drug Administration is the regulating body for all food production and handling activities in the United States. Food safety regulations are based on strict laws passed by Congress. Food consultants will work closely with Food & Drug Administration examiners to ensure they are complying with applicable safety laws.
Food consulting firms are represented by food safety representatives who are responsible for communicating to restaurant owners and chefs about current food safety programs and implementing new ones. These representatives are responsible for informing restaurant owners and chefs about the hazards of hand washing, creating a hazard-free work environment, and implementing safety programs that comply with state law. Food safety consultants also work with restaurants and other catering businesses to conduct routine product testing and quality assurance checks. These checks help to ensure foods are consistently safe for consumption.

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