Food freshness and safety go hand in hand. As many operators are leaning on smaller, local suppliers to shrink the supply chain, it’s still important to ask questions of these companies that can make the difference between receiving produce shortly after it is picked, or many hours later. A recent report from US Foods cited a key question that Michael Navarrette, executive chef at Café Luxembourg in New York, always asks any prospective vendor: Where am I on your delivery route? If produce is sitting on a truck in the heat of summer, it’s vulnerable to the spread of germs that subsequent washing may miss. Knowing how large the window is between the picking of the produce and its arrival at your door can make a difference in your food quality, safety and waste.