Costing Guide for Street Food Vendors, by Chef Sabri Hassan

Chef Sabri Hassan. Source: The Star.

For those who delve into the business of street food, a little piece of advice can come in handy. Here is Chef Sabri Hassan, one of Malaysia's well-known celebrity chefs, with some tips on how to calculate your costs. 

Here's a translated transcript of the video:

Okay, guys, I just want to give you some tips on how to calculate your costs. Very simple!

If you're running a hotel, the food cost is 30%; the capital would be 30% and the profit would be 70%. Why? Because we want to pay the salary of our professional chefs, our decorations, air conditioning, etc. - that is why it is very expensive.

Whereas, when we sell off the stall at a roadside like street food, with only two employees, and rent around RM20 per day - the food cost can be 50%.

As an example, if you sell 'Daging Goreng Kicap', the cost of 1kg may be RM18. Per portion, we would use about 200g (RM3.60). Then, add other items, say, about RM0.40. So, eventually, it becomes RM4.00. With that RM4.00, you need to add another 10% as miscellaneous costs.

So, what are those 10% miscellaneous costs? It means our salary, electricity, water bills, and rent. Eventually, when we add that 10%, the cost becomes RM4.40.

If the cost is RM4.40, then the price (of the item) that we should sell as street food (vendor) is about RM8.00 to RM10.00.

That's how you do it.

Whatever we sell, we must know how to calculate our costs. Only then we would feel content. Our day's hard work would then be worthwhile.

Sometimes when we want to open up a catering business, it sounds exciting. We can potentially gain about RM100k. We work from 6 in the morning until 2 the next morning. We pay for all the canopy rent, chair (and table) rent, part-time staff salaries, and lorry rent - in the end, in that RM100,000 of our hard work, we only gain about RM2000 per day! That's important (to know).

For catering, the food cost is 28%. For every 1 Ringgit, the capital/investment is about 28%.

That is more or less what I can share about kitchen management at this point in time.

I'm Chef Sabri ... Labamba Chicago Milano!

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