Brain Food: Look after the Pennies - Cheeseparing Chief

When Atlantic City pizza boss 'Big' Dave Ostrander was asked by a cost-conscious colleague whether his staff should be free-throwing the cheese onto the pizzas or pre-measuring it, he put the technique to the test.

by David Waller
Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

But results showed that Ostander over-threw by an ounce and a half, wasting the costliest ingredient on the pizza. So he dropped the casual method in favour of portion control, banning random handfuls and urging staff to use plastic cups filled with the correct weight of cheese for each size of pizza. To encourage his staff to comply with the new system, he offered them half the cost-savings for the first two weeks. 'To get your employees to do something like this, you've got to get on their radio station, WII-FM - What's In It For Me?' But what was in it for Big Dave?

'I saved 20% on my cheese costs in the first week, and went from using 1,000 lbs a week to using 800 lbs.' He now works as an operations consultant to the pizza industry - preaching his portion control to the trade. Top that.

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime