Purchasing, Receiving, Storage & Inventory


Central to smooth food production is the purchasing, receiving, storage and inventory procedures and practices. Without efficient systems in place, reliable food sources and good working relationships, producing food to feed all patients and customers would not be possible. With the advent of new computerized systems and food ordering platforms, ordering and keeping track of inventory has become easier and simpler to maintain and use.

This section contains the food systems management report, and accounts of inventory, purchasing and ordering that was done.

The module checklist and supporting evidence can be found below.

Food Systems Management Report

As part of this module I was able to work cooperatively with different employees such as the food service director, head chef, dietitians, managers, cooks, tray aides, and the receiving clerk in order to complete these materials. This is the answered questions and full write up for purchasing, receiving and storage.


Dry Storage

Inventory is an important process for food service to properly manage resources, rotate stock, and keep financial accounts. It is important to know what food items are being used more frequently than others, what items need to be used and keep up with the general practice of managing inventory stores.

The inventory is done once per month, usually conducted at the end of the month.

We were able to participate in taking inventory of the chemical storage room for the month of October, on 10/25/2018, in preparation for end of month financial statements. The fridge/freezer inventory is done by the head chef and the dry storage areas are done by other managers.

Inventory Procedure

Inventory takes place generally once, at the end of the month. The manager responsible for taking inventory uses the Metz Culinary Management Inventory Taking Sheets, while counting inventory. The inventory sheets contain the inventory items, GL code, Par, Price, Quantity on hand and the units of the items. One person can do this, however, to save time, two managers will work together to count inventory, where one person calls out the listed items, while another person counts what is in stock.

There are three storage areas, fridges and freezers that must be inventoried. Each area has it’s own Inventory Sheet to keep things organized. Normally, the inventory is done one room at a time, throughout the day, as time permits. Then the inventory sheets are submitted to the food service manager for end of month statements.


This facility buys the majority of its products from US Foods, Inc., and has a lead time of one day for most items. Rockland Bakery provides fresh bread weekly and speciality items not available through US Foods are ordered/purchased from local retailers. In order to purchase goods for the week the manager signs into the US Foods system and is able to order food, check past invoices and track deliveries.

Making An Order

This system is fairly easy to use and gives one the ability to save most frequently bought items in a list to streamline weekly purchasing. As part of this module, we were able to login to US Foods on a Thursday and make a purchase for the week by finding the item in the system, selecting it, specifying the quantity, adding to the cart along with other weekly items and then placing the order. Once the order was placed the system verifies if those items are available for order. In cases where the item is out of stock the system prompts you to make a substitution. The system makes a substitution recommendation that one can choose from, or a new item can be searched for based on the needs of the facility. In our case, one item, sugar free vanilla pudding was out of stock. Because this is a patient line item it must be stocked. US Foods did not have a substitution for this item, therefore the manager elected to buy this item from a different company. Once we settled the substitution we proceeded to complete the order, which would arrive the following day, Friday.