Sourcing really good ingredients
As a personal chef the most difficult job I have is sourcing of ingredients. When I can find really good, honest and reliable ingredients that is gold for me as a personal chef. My clients are very strict and knowledgeable . They are aware of food trends and they demand the healthy versions of those trends. My objective is to go out and meet with farmers , growers and food connoisseurs. I test their soils, I do frequents visits to see how humane the farm is operating, and I sample ingredients in it's raw form to detect any chemicals. Throughout the country I have farms that I frequent. Weather I am on Martha's Vineyard, Santa Barbara, or Miami Beach I have places I can use to source products. I often next day delivery items from New York City, NYC has great specialty shops and access to organic farmers that are passionate in producing a clean top notch product. Of course not everyone has access to great ingredients from around the world but I can give you list of places to start in any city.
Wholesales food distributors
Local and regional suppliers
Green markets and farmers markets
Wholesale food distributors usually require some kind of registration with the city. In today's world they are now being open to the public. These distributors can be important because they resell the smaller companies products. Usually when a company is small they tend to be more honest and their integrity is high with the ingredients they use or sell. I have found great gems by accident. Wholesales food distributors usually have a good online present so they are easy to locate. They also have events where they advertise the companies they promote. At these events the companies have samples of their product and detailed information on how the company operates. oftentimes I get to meet the owners of specialty boutique farmers, retailers and food innovators. I have been to herb farms, specialty mushroom farms and I get first hand of incredible ingredients.
Manufactures are definitely usually closed to the public, they source ingredients and put together food products for retailers. Oftentimes they sell some of their ingredients in bulk to the public. This is an excellent way to shop for seasonings and healthy bottled sauces. If you have the luxury to have a manufacture based in your city, utilize them you can get products for pennies on the dollar. Sometimes they forward unused and unexpired goods to the nearest food bank. I have found really good organic ingredients at the food bank for 1 to 3 dollars.
Local and regional suppliers are known for having good ingredients. Not for nothing but you also reduce your carbon footprint working with a local supplies. They safeguard you from inventory issues. So you may think why is this important for a single shopper? Eating clean and without chemicals can be really tough. Having access to a local supplier can be a god sent. They always have supplies especially those ingredients that are hard to find. For example, I had a client that eat dehydrate low glycemic vegetable . I made flour with these vegetables , I used it to bread protein. For health reasons this particular client was at this point. Having access to the supplier who made these Vegetables was life saving for me. I did not have to depend on the local retailer for this product. Being on keto, I am almost sure you will find ingredients you love that are difficult to source.
Organic grass fed curry lamb with cauliflower rice (sourced from farmers market)
Green markets and farmers markets promote regional agriculture and ensure a continuing supply of fresh, local produce. They support farmers and preserves farmland for the future by providing them with opportunities to sell really fresh product. Here you can learn about the farmers and get access to the specialty hormone free, humane, grass fed and grass finished products. Green markets are a great access to seasonal produce. Being on keto I recommend very highly to consume seasonal produce. They also taste better and yield a perfect product.
Food coops are retainers that are owned by its shoppers. So these shoppers decides what to put on shelves, where to source products, prices of products and quality and standards of ingredients. Because the people of the community owns the store, the community as a whole benefits. They prioritize health, togetherness, and family. So developing a mindset of healthy eating, joining a coop would be the best decision to make. You get to dictate what goes on the shelve at the local grocery. Coops are such a time saver, I love them so much. I love going to a coop in my clients community and have all my staples there waiting for me. It's even better when a large portion of the community posses your eating style.
Shopping clubs usually save it's members money. You can offend buy in bulk. The online place have seen a large growth with shopping clubs. You can source product in one place. Being online you have access to almost everything. I particularly use shopping club when I am sourcing a catering event and for the sake of this article meal prepping.
So use these shopping tools to help develop a mindset with diet It's so easy and starting with a declaration. Make a decision and go with it.
Thanks for reading and if you need any help contact me.