Salad shortages are a headache for restaurants

A nationwide lettuce shortage is putting new pressure on restaurant owners, and the shortages and rising costs could continue for several more weeks. The trouble stems from a tough growing season in Salinas, California, where lettuce is available this time of year. But there is hope that conditions will improve as the growing season moves into Arizona soon. “It’s really hard for us to get salad,” said Winn Nguyen, a restaurateur with locations in Indianola and Norwalk. “It doesn’t matter what company you buy from.” To keep his salad bar open at Winn’s Pizza & Steakhouse, he has been going to the local Fareway to buy his own salad.” It’s been tough. Lettuce is historically high,” said Loffredo Fresh Foods Assistant Purchasing Department Bob Harper. “The market price of lettuce yesterday was the highest it’s ever been.” Some suppliers and restaurants have been substituting other vegetables for their typical offerings. But the outlook is expected to improve when Arizona lettuce is ready in a week or two.

A nationwide lettuce shortage is putting new pressure on restaurant owners, and the shortages and rising costs could continue for several more weeks.

The trouble stems from a tough growing season in Salinas, California, where lettuce is available this time of year. But there is hope that conditions will improve as the growing season moves into Arizona soon.

“It’s really hard for us to get salad,” said Winn Nguyen, a restaurateur with locations in Indianola and Norwalk. “It doesn’t matter which company you buy from.”

To keep his salad bar open at Winn’s Pizza & Steakhouse, he has been going to the local Fareway to buy his own salad.

“It’s been tough. Lettuce is at an all-time high,” said Bob Harper, purchasing assistant at Loffredo Fresh Foods. “The market price of lettuce yesterday was the highest it has ever been.”

Some purveyors and restaurants have been substituting other vegetables for their typical offerings.

But the outlook is expected to improve when Arizona lettuce is ready in a week or two.

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