Cheap as chips? Meet the fish and chip owner keeping costs low by working longer nights & More Trending News


The owner of one in all the least expensive chip retailers in Christchurch says value and provide is hitting the trade onerous, however “we will survive.”

Fish and Chips is struggling to keep up its spot as the most inexpensive takeaway on the market, however Terry Chen​, owner of Nottingham Fish Supply, does what he can to maintain costs down.

According to Stats NZ knowledge, one fish and scoop of chips value round $8.07 in January final 12 months. In January 2021 it was $7.44. At Chen’s retailer on Monday, it was $6.40.

While that meant working until midnight most days, peeling potatoes and hand-cutting chips along with his accomplice Aliar Pang​, the duo say it’s price it to provide again to the neighborhood that had supported them by way of Covid-19.

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“We can probably only do this for another three or five years… we work too much, and my kids are getting older,” Chen stated.

“I love fish and chips, it’s so easy, and you have regular customers…. you can survive, but you can’t be lazy.”

He stated he’d peeled and minimize so many potatoes that it’d begun irritating his pores and skin, “I’m allergic to potato now.”

Fish and Chip shop owner Terry Chen and partner Aliar Pang often work until midnight to keep costs low for customers.

Peter Meecham/Stuff

Fish and Chip store owner Terry Chen and accomplice Aliar Pang usually work till midnight to maintain costs low for patrons.

Comparing receipts from 2022 to now, he stated vegetable oil had tripled in value, whereas objects like flour and wrapping paper had elevated by $10 – excluding GST – per unit.

Chen needed to be artistic to maintain costs low. He stated one in all his most profitable strategies was no longer shopping for pre-cut chips, which he stated had gone from round $42 to $58 per unit, relying on provider.

They additionally made meat patties from scratch, however he argued it tasted higher do-it-yourself, anyway.

At $3.20 a scoop, their chips have been $0.80 cheaper than the common chip store in Christchurch. Chen was conscious, however didn’t need to alienate the neighbourhood, saying “we know people can’t afford it.”

Pang stated the $20 household deal, which was initially launched in the peak of Covid-19, stayed on the menu as a result of it had change into so fashionable.

“We know we will need to increase our prices in April when minimum wage goes up, so we don’t like to increase prices multiple times a year.

“The locals support local businesses so much… we try our best to help back,” she stated.

Keeping them completely happy additionally meant keeping their menu artistic, regardless of a few of the favourites changing into dearer.

One of their proudest experiments was deep fried custard sq., which they stated attracted prospects from the different facet of the metropolis.

Their menu had change into more and more restricted by provide points. They stated tinned pineapple and bottles of catering-sized sauce have been changing into scarcer, and one thing they’d to purchase in bulk once they knew it was in inventory.

Their bread provider now required individuals to order twice as a lot to qualify without cost deliveries. Even their fish provider – a member of Chen’s household – had restricted prospects to at least one carton per order.

The produce used was native once they may get it, and they’d taken to deep-frying seasonal greens like asparagus, so prospects would at all times have cheaper choices.

Despite needing to work more durable to make ends meet, Chen had a dream which saved him motivated.

Chen had worked in the industry for decades, and hoped to win a Fish and Chip competition before he closed his doors.

Peter Meecham/Stuff

Chen had labored in the trade for many years, and hoped to win a Fish and Chip competitors earlier than he closed his doorways.

The household chip store he labored at and later owned in Ashburton – Creek Road Food Bar – was a finalist in a 2008 competitors to seek out the finest Fish and Chip store in the nation.

He’d been chasing a nomination and win ever since, specializing in keeping his requirements excessive and prospects completely happy, even when it hit their backside line.

In November, Stats NZ reported a 14-year excessive of meals costs. The common was 10.1%.

For the 12 months ending November 2022, the value of fish and different seafood elevated by 11.3%. For oil and fat, it was an increase of 4.1%, and for greens it was 20.7%.

Cheap as chips? Meet the fish and chip owner keeping costs low by working longer nights

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