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Catering, Vending and Cooking For The Masses. this forum is OnTopic. A resource to help with catering, vending and just cooking for large parties. Topics to include Getting Started, Ethics, Marketing, Catering resources, Formulas and recipes for cooking for large groups.


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Unread 07-03-2010, 10:05 PM   #1
FullyInvolvedBBQ
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Default Vending Etiquette - To vend or not to vend?

I have only participated in one event and I didn't know if I priced my food right. I suspected my prices were too low because we were slammed all day. I never had a chance to leave my cook site and see what everyone else was charging because we had this long line all day! I don't want to make any enemies and I'm sure undercutting prices will do just that. We sold over $3000.00 worth of food and made just a few dollars over what we spent after their 80/20 cut. We did our price schedule something like this:
Single: 1 meat and 2 sides (your choice of meat) $6.00
Double: 2 meats and 2 sides $7.00
Triple: 3 meats and 2 sides $10.00
Grand Slam: all four meats and 2 sides $12.00
Sides were: cole slaw, potato salad, and baked beans
a meat serving was a pork sandwich, two pieces of dark meat chicken, two or three ribs (depending on size) and about 5 slices of brisket

What do you charge? What's fair? Is it really worth it?
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Unread 07-04-2010, 05:35 AM   #2
southernsmoker
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You need to at least get 30% more than your cost, even more..we sell a rib dinner for $10, includes ribs, home baked beans, slaw and a roll, the way they sell and although we recoup 30% profit, I'm thinking thats still too cheap.
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Unread 07-04-2010, 05:47 AM   #3
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You are low - a pork sammy is $5 or $6 with an 80-20 cut especially if for charity. 3 bones of spares is $6 or $7. Brisket $6. Add 2 sides for $2. I no longer vend chicken because so many cook it at home and demand is low. But 2 thighs would be $5.

If you sold $3000 then you made $2400 so cost of meat and sides should have been no more than $600. I bet you spent more.
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Unread 07-04-2010, 07:54 AM   #4
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Oh, ya... I spent twice that probably.
I do think I need to price each meat separately due to the difference in cost and then have single meat add on prices for people who want to try more stuff. Thanks for the input, would like to hear more...
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Unread 07-04-2010, 08:35 AM   #5
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You were likely the bargain of the event. A $10 charge for your single is common. I charge more for Brisket & ribs on a sliding scale based on the per pound differences compared to pork & chicken. I have also found you can help keep pork costs down by using a mix of butts & picnics.
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Unread 07-04-2010, 10:20 AM   #6
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How much money did you lose?
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Unread 07-05-2010, 09:48 PM   #7
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We actually made a couple of hundred bucks, but we split that amongst the team, we did just better than break even. Lucky for us we sold out of everything. Also lucky for us, so did everyone else... otherwise we would have made some people mad taking away their business by underpricing. Just a little beginners ignorance on my part.
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Unread 07-08-2010, 11:27 AM   #8
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Around here where I am if I can do a sandwich and drink for $5 Ill do a mass amount. Families here are big and you can get that out of them but at $7 they will buy one and share it. I do burnt ends and shredded chicken only cause there is 2 other at my market that do pork and I don't want to compete. My plate is 1 meat 1 side and a can drink for $6.50. and I do 3 times the sales as $7
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