Duda Farm Fresh Foods' Chef Todd Fisher Discusses the Road to Reopening at PMA Foodservice: Delivered
- by Chandler James
UNITED STATES - Produce Marketing Association’s (PMA) Foodservice: Delivered event was especially relevant this year as foodservice operators across the country are working to navigate this strange COVID world. One of the hottest topics on the table was the road to reopening restaurants, spearheaded by industry leaders like Chef Todd Fisher from Duda Farm Fresh Foods. I had a chance to sit down with him after the show and gain a chef’s perspective on the challenges restaurateurs currently face.
“The road to reopening, in many ways, is the same as opening a new restaurant. Staffing needs are in question with reduced capacities as some staff are not comfortable with coming back. The new sanitation guidelines are actually not far from our previous sanitation standards. However, in the past, those tasks were done in somewhat of a low-profile style. Now, we want people to see the efforts we are going through to ensure they are both safe and feeling comfortable,” Chef Todd explained. “Due to some ingredients being unavailable, in addition to limited staffing, we cannot execute our original full menus. Staff retraining, taking temperatures, logging contacts, and the re-closing of dining rooms have made this transition truly difficult.”
As foodservice operators continue to work through this challenging time, I was curious as to how fresh produce suppliers might lend a helping hand. According to Chef Todd, this essential supply chain relationship boils down to two key collaborations: providing smaller pack sizes as category usage decreases, and evaluating new pre-cut needs as labor forces are reduced.
At the end of the day, though, we all took to PMA’s virtual trade show floor because we are invested in one thing: delicious food. That’s why Chef Todd also took a beat to showcase an exclusive brunch recipe demo.
“My brunch recipe was a savory ‘Dutch Baby’ using Dandy Super Sweet Corn, bacon, and brie. In the demo, we showed the viewers how to cook the bacon and corn and how to mix the batter. Afterward, we topped the Dutch Baby with brie cheese and put it in the oven. Once it was fully cooked, we showed how to serve and garnish the dish,” he explained.
A tempting recipe like that had us all reaching through the screen in hopes of getting a taste!
Despite the challenges and unconventional new formats, there is one message that prevails: this industry will do whatever it takes to bring the world the best-tasting, highest-quality food.
Stick with us here at AndNowUKnow as we all navigate these strange times together.