[2023 Update] Sourcing products, starting your own business, and expanding your products lines can require a lot of work, time, and money. The kitchenware supplies industry can be a great opportunity with steady annual growth, including the growth of the salt and pepper mills market across the globe.
As a professional salt and pepper grinder manufacturer, we’re frequently asked a lot of questions from our clients. We integrated these common questions, and hope this is workable for those who are planning to purchase salt and pepper grinders.
That’s a good place to start when you’re sourcing salt and pepper grinders– how much are you willing to spend? Once you decide on your budget, there are other factors to consider as well. That’s what we look at in this blog post – what is important to know when you’re sourcing salt and pepper grinders, which are tools that should be durable and meet all your target audience’s needs when cooking and serving food. Whether you’re equipping a chain of restaurants you own, ordering them to sell to your distributors, or purchasing grinders for expanding product lines on Amazon, the same principles apply. The only difference is scale – are you ordering one grinder, or 1000? Either way, you need to consider the following details before making your decision!
The price (or unit price) is the important thing that most buyers care about. However, the quantity is one point often overlooked. Normally, every product has its own MOQ (Minimum Order Quantity). Simply calculate your target price and MOQ to compare with your budget. Check whether you are going to carry on this salt and pepper grinder case.
Furthermore, you may get favorable when you buying a large amount, the extra fee or increased unit price for small quantity on the contrary.
Grinders are primarily made of three materials: wood, acrylic, or stainless steel. There are other materials too, and we will touch on those.
Wooden salt and pepper mills are a favorite with home cooks, professional chefs, and restaurateurs alike, who love the look of them on their dining tables. Wood grinders have a classy, traditional appearance, and are most commonly made from beech or wood from rubber trees. Rubber tree wood is the right density for grinders; it’s ideal hard and weight. It has very little shrinkage making it one of the more stable construction materials available for furniture, toys, and kitchen accessories.
Furthermore, wood is relatively variable compared to other materials due to its characteristics, so it’s perfect for any occasion like cooking in the kitchen or serving a meal at the dining room table.
This substance is a dense, versatile type of plastic. Acrylic is used for lots of kitchen products, and salt and pepper grinders made of this material are very popular with chefs of all types. It’s highly durable, and is clear, rather like a crystal utensil. Acrylic is used for grinders of all sizes, and because it stands up to moisture even better than wood does, it’s ideal for humid kitchens. As a bonus, because it’s clear, acrylic grinders have the added feature of allowing you to see when your spice is running low and you need to do a refill. No more realizing the pepper mill is empty just as your guests sit down to dinner!
If it’s a metallic finish you want when you’re purchasing salt and pepper grinders, stainless steel is your best bet. You can find these online at plenty of kitchen equipment sites, and they come in shades like rose and gold – very swanky! Many fine dining restaurants place stainless steel grinders on their tables or have their staff use them, for example, when grinding fresh pepper over a guest’s salad or grilled fish. They look beautiful and are very efficient. This material has a kind of natural, light-colored hue, and it’s easy to hold and use.
As we mentioned, other materials are used to make grinders, too, like bamboo, concrete, and marble. Some are even made of a combo of materials, like wood and stainless steel. What matters is that you source grinders you like, that are made well and are in your price range.
Sizes, Shapes & Colors
6” and 8” (15.24cm and 20.32cm) height are two popular sizes according to our experience. They are moderate sizes to place on the dining tabletop and easy to grip when grinding. However, professional chefs usually prefer large grinders, bigger than the ones most consumers like for their own kitchen. In brief, you have to choose the size based on your target audience’s needs, but if you don’t have particular requirements, 6” and 8” are good choices for you.
There are mainly two different shapes on the market today: modern, which means sleek and refined, and classic, which is like the traditional wood grinders you may have seen in pizzerias.
Of course, you can always design your own if you’re willing to invest the time, money, and patient. The unique design makes your grinder stand out. It is possible to source a manufacturer who will bring your technical drawings to life, and they won’t steal your design, don’t worry! You can even ask that the grinders are made in whatever color you prefer. Remember that even if using the same Pantone color, the color might slightly vary on different materials or different finishes such as matt and bright.
If, by chance, you’re buying products to sell online or give away as promotions to your clients, be aware that every country has firm standards for all items that come into contact with food, and that includes grinders. Let’s say you’re purchasing pepper grinders to sell with your peppercorns. Before you put in your order, double-check whether the grinders meet or exceed your location’s guidelines. If by chance you need certification, ask the company you’re ordering the grinders from to give you all the necessary paperwork.
There are some fundamental features shared by all advanced salt and pepper grinders such as an adjustable knob, shaft, dispenser, and grinder.
The grinding mechanism is the most vital piece and should be of excellent quality so it operates perfectly, no matter the grind setting you use. Ceramic and carbon steel are what most manufacturers use to make grinders, and each material has advantages.
Grinders made of carbon steel are exceptionally sharp, which is precisely what grinders should be. A steel pepper grinder is an ideal choice, while for salt, opt for a ceramic grinder instead. Because ceramic withstands corrosion, it’s perfect for salt grinders. We should note that you can use your ceramic grinder for peppercorns, too, but the reverse isn’t true – you can’t use your carbon steel pepper grinder for salt.
If you want more information on these mechanisms, please refer to our blog: Pepper Mill vs. Salt Mill: What’s the Difference?
The knob on the top of the grinder is intended for setting it to various grinds, everything from fine to coarse. A top adjustable knob is easy to use during the grinding process. For this reason, it is the typical setting for salt and pepper mill in general. Some models have this adjustment on the bottom of the grinder, but only in special circumstances.
For example: let’s say you’re sourcing pepper grinders in the shape of Micky Mouse. (Yes, they exist!) Obviously, you wouldn’t want the knob smack in the middle of Micky’s head, right? So, the manufacturer puts it on the bottom, instead. But that only occurs when grinders are designed to look like particular objects or characters. Then, the folks who’ve made the grinders have to get creative! If the idea of the modifying knob’s placement really matters to you, stay away from odd or unusual designs when you’re sourcing salt and pepper grinders.
Dispenser & Shaft
A consistent, efficient grinding is the sole purpose of this essential kitchen tool. The dispenser plays an important role in consistent grinding. Therefore, a top-of-the-line grinder must have a dispenser. The dispenser is a stabilizer of a salt and pepper grinder. It is set for centering the inner shaft and ensuring that the top lid, shaft, and grinder set all share the exact same axial center when grinding proceeding. It provides both consistency of grind as well as an extremely fast grind speed.
When it comes to the shaft, stainless steel or aluminum are the materials you want. Stainless steel is the optimum choice since it is durable than aluminum in the long run. The larger size of the grinder, the longer shaft. With this in mind, stainless steel is especially suitable for large salt and pepper grinder, because the long aluminum shaft is relatively soft which might bend and cause unsteady grinding.
Company logos are an essential part of branding. Whether you use grinders as a flagship product on your eCommerce platform or need them for actual use in your restaurant, placing your logo on merchandise like grinders is a great way to raise your brand’s profile.
There are multiple ways to add a logo because of different materials. For example, a print way looks good on wood and acrylic grinder; a laser way is more suitable for stainless steel grinder. Whether you print or laser your logo, it will look great on the crossbar and grinders.
Order a Sample
Before placing an order for, let’s say, 1000 grinders for your restaurant chain, ensure it’s right by asking for a sample first. Once the sample arrives, check out these details:
Check the sample carefully – is the wood damaged in any way? Is the logo in the right spot? Is your company’s info clearly legible? For instance, you can observe the pores of wood when you reviewing a wood pepper mill. Since wood is a natural material, it surely has inevitable wood pores. Nonetheless, big and noticeable pores shouldn’t affect a top-notch salt and pepper grinder’s appearance. Check whether the pores of the salt and pepper grinder are carefully filled in and sanding. Make sure the surface is smooth to the touch and that your logo looks good.
Be sure that the grinder functions properly by testing the mechanism. Put some peppercorns in, and turn the knob clockwise for a fine grind, counterclockwise for coarse. Don’t stop there, however; try several variations on both ends of the spectrum, some very fine, some just a little course. (If you’re not certain how to set the adjustment knob for the grind you want, please check out this video: How to Adjust Salt and Pepper Grinder Correctly).
Ordering several samples from a variety of manufacturers is smart; it lets you test out different models before committing to any of them.
Here is a practical way for you: set every grinder to the same coarseness degree, then put them on the table and spin the top of each salt and pepper grinder for about 10 turns. Take away the salt and pepper grinders and inspect the amount of grinding.
Of course, the more amount means the easier grinding. Remember that different grinder mechanisms such as ceramic or carbon steel have different sharpness which affects the amount of grinding. Hence, put the same mechanism material and size of salt and pepper grinder together for this comparison test as possible as you can.
We prepare a simple step-by-step video for you on how to check the sample: How to Check Salt and Pepper Grinder
If you’ve got the budget, investing some terrific elements is a way to raise your company’s profile and increase brand awareness. Here are some added features you can consider:
Customized Color Boxes
Packaging is a vital part of customer satisfaction because how your product is wrapped is the initial thing a client sees. As the saying goes, “First impressions are lasting ones,” so you’ve got to get this right.
It might cost extra tooling fees and has MOQ based on different styles of color boxes, but if you can afford it, it is a worthy investment project to show your brand image, go for it!
If you don’t have the budget for that, consider using stickers on the packaging, which cost less but can nonetheless be visually striking. Stickers show off your brand but are less expensive than customized boxes.
Card & Label Tags
Adding a thank you card and tag in the container with the salt and pepper grinders is an excellent way to connect with your customers. Or you could simply include a brief message, such as “Hope to See You Soon at Danny’s Diner!” Anything that prompts a customer to think of you makes a lasting impression.
Have you ever purchased an item online and been baffled about how to use it? Those products wind up gathering dust in a cupboard, never to be seen again! Don’t let that happen with your salt and pepper grinders. Include a short manual in a font people can read (not six-point type!) that explains how their salt and pepper grinders work.
Distinguishable Knobs & Other Accessories
It’s hard to recognize between a pepper mill and a salt mill with wood or stainless steel except for a clear acrylic grinder or grinder with an acrylic window. With this in mind, “S” and “P” words carved on the adjustable knob can help your customers distinguish at a glance.
Additionally, consider sending out accessories with the grinders, like a special, brush for cleaning, a stand for holding, and a funnel for refilling them. They are all good accessories for your fantastic salt and pepper grinders.
Sourcing high-quality salt and pepper mills are really not too challenging, as long as you’re patient and pay close attention to all the little details, which together make for a beautiful, efficient, and top-notch grinder!
Communicate with your supplier regularly, give them as much information as possible about the kind of grinders you want, and stay in touch as the process unfolds. Get your sample grinder, check it closely to be sure it’s perfect, then order whatever size batch you need. Before you know it, you’ll have top-notch salt and pepper grinders as brand hot sale products, or for use in your restaurant, or even for use in everyone’s home!