FARGO, ND (Valley News Live) – If you’ve recently paid more for a restaurant meal, you’re not alone.

For restaurateurs like Heidi Roggenkamp, ​​recent supply chain bottlenecks and pent-up demand from the pandemic have taken their toll. The owner of Randy’s Diner says the price and availability of many items has fluctuated several times a week.

“Chicken wings are a perfect example. Previously we could get a case of chicken wings for $ 50 and then they were $ 140 to $ 160 for a while, ”she said. “It’s amazing how much the towels have increased. We were there two months and couldn’t get blackberry jelly from all things! It’s very weird.

As of this fall, the United States Bureau of Labor says the prices consumers pay in restaurants and bars have risen nearly five percent from 2020. However, Roggenkamp says the restaurant industry does not it’s like no other, because the prices cannot be increased regularly. .

“Bacon or steaks change prices three times a week. I can’t reprint my menus that often, ”Roggenkamp said.

Instead, Roggenkamp says it’s the companies that end up bearing the brunt of these additional costs, which then forces them to be frugal in other places like portion sizes, electricity and breakage of the machine. dishes.

“It used to take three or four days to prepare the dishes and now it’s up to 11 weeks sometimes due to being stuck on a barge in the middle of the ocean or whatever,” she said.

Roggenkamp says she raised menu prices just two months ago for the first time since 2018, but most items have only increased by a quarter.

“And people were still upset about it,” she joked.

Roggenkamp says the shortages have had no impact on the menu yet, but says Randy’s Diner has had to temporarily cut items over the past few months, including wings and steak.

“In terms of sales and business flow, the profit margins are very low,” Roggenkamp said.

Roggenkamp says most clients have been understanding and supportive during this difficult time and encourages everyone to continue to be compassionate with people in the service industry as they navigate uncharted waters.

“We don’t know what’s going to happen or how many variations are going to come out. We don’t know if they’re going to impose another lockdown on us or anything. So we are trying to move forward as normally as possible, ”she said.

Roggenkamp said Randy’s new West Fargo location is scheduled to open in February.

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