Skip to content
Jim Martell | 09 April 2024

Avoid these 3 inventory mistakes in your restaurant and F&B business

Avoid these 3 inventory mistakes in your restaurant and F&B business

In the fast-paced world of restaurant and food and beverage (F&B) businesses, effective inventory management is the key to success. Yet, many establishments fall prey to avoidable mistakes that can have a negative impact on their bottom line.

Let’s take a look at three mistakes restaurants and F&B businesses often face with inventory management, and how to avoid them.

1. Reordering too little or too many ingredients

Reordering ingredients becomes a costly guessing game when you don’t have the right technology in place. Order too much, and you’re stuck with a boatload of ingredients that may expire before you can even use them; order too little, and risk selling out of certain dishes too quickly, resulting in lost sales. If you don’t have clear and accurate insight into how many ingredients or materials you use daily, you’ll likely end up costing your business a lot more than necessary.

To make sure you always have the right amount of stock on hand, it’s important to automate your replenishment processes. The right automated replenishment system will be able to track demand across your business, while also applying any rules or thresholds you’ve set to suggest the correct number needed for purchase. And in cases where there might be a dramatic shift in sales, like seasonal changes or unexpected events, you should be able to manually adjust the system to account for these instances, so you’re always prepared to meet customer expectations.

2. Producing too much food waste

According to a recent report from the National Restaurant Association, restaurants in the United States waste around 22-33 billion pounds of food annually. With many ingredients often having a short shelf life or spoiling quickly, restaurants that don’t have the right technology to keep track of ingredients efficiently will often waste more product than they use.

If you’re still writing down stock numbers by hand or using a spreadsheet in Excel to monitor your inventory, not only are you leaving too much room for human error, but this amount of time-consuming, manual work will more than likely result in inaccurate or unreliable information. But by selecting restaurant management software, like LS Central, that can sync recipes to the POS, you can automatically deduct the correct amount of ingredients as soon as you sell a dish. Having this feature will enable you to track your usage accurately and see all your available stock in real-time, making it easier to reduce food waste and save on costs.

3. Poor data analysis

Understanding inventory trends, patterns, and turnover is a significant challenge for restaurant and F&B businesses, largely due to their reliance on disparate systems that cannot communicate with each other. This makes it difficult to connect and interpret different sets of data across the business, leading to a lot of repetitive, manual work that ultimately limits visibility. And worst all - the data is either inaccurate or outdated by the time you’re actually able to make sense of it.

To combat this challenge, you need a unified restaurant management system capable of connecting all your various channels and touchpoints in real-time within a single database. This means you only need to enter data once in order to get a clear overview of your information. And when you can easily make sense of things like stock availability, best-selling, or unpopular dishes, and how often you sell out of certain items, you can then identify inefficiencies in your inventory or supply chain and make informed decisions to improve your business.


Is your business facing challenges with inventory? Discover how LS Central’s robust replenishment functionalities can meet all your business requirements. Contact us.

Don’t buy restaurant management software until you read this
Featured eBook

Don’t buy restaurant management software until you read this

Learn the 7 most common mistakes food-service and restaurant owners make when selecting business software or POS systems, and how to avoid falling in those traps.
Download Today