Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

JUN 2019

Foodservice Equipment & Supplies magazines is an industry resource connecting foodservice operators, equipment and supplies manufacturers and dealers, and facility design consultants.

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42 FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES JUNE 2019 Q: O-premise eating is huge, even in noncommercial settings. How do you see this aecting design and equipment speci‡cation? Schumaker: This is so true right now. The main reason why companies are investing in catering arms is because people are trying to gure out off- premise dining. I think we are actually going to see a pivot back to a very old way of doing things, which is com- missary kitchens feeding into smaller dining areas that may or may not be kitchen-based. And then instead of ship- ping the food over hot, I think what's going to start happening is we will start transporting food cold and then doing the nishing work at the site. I already know multiple operators in the San Francisco Bay Area who are doing this, where they will mark off a piece of salmon at the commissary, blast chill it and then nish it a la minute at the site as opposed to hot-holding salmon, which turns it into a nasty mess. Daniel: We're seeing a lot more online or kiosk ordering, and many colleges and even contract feeders are developing their own online ordering apps. This is all trickling down into our designs such that we're seeing requests for things like a grab-and-go holding area or cubby or shelf system where you would have normally had a queue line. Q: Tarah, are you seeing o-premise growth in higher education? Schroeder: Off-premise is denitely something we're seeing in higher ed, where there is more invest- ment in commissaries. In looking at the capital funds that are available, the question is, what is the best way to get food to students, knowing that there will likely be increased construction costs and possibly labor shortages dur- ing the project? One of the solutions is having a central commissary and then a smaller dining space. This is especially the case if you have a mobile app for students to use to order online and take their food outside of the brick-and-mortar space. Suddenly, the space requirements and the number of employees you need become much less in order to meet that need. In terms of equipment, in higher ed, we're seeing more campuses look at using lockers and other methods of hot-holding and food pickup. They might be using an area that's underuti- lized, and by adding some hot-holding space, students are able to get food at all hours of the day, even when the main kitchen is closed. Q: With internet connectivity readily available today, what types of tech- nology and applications are opera- tors investing in? And how does this impact your role as a designer? Daniel: While I may not specify this technology, I need to know the clients' plans from a functional stand- point so I can understand how their operation is going to ‚ow from the time the person walks in the door until the time they leave. Online ordering and other technol- ogy can reduce the need for queuing lines, where traditionally you would walk in, place your order at a counter, and stand there and wait for it to be prepared. With the growth of online ordering, you can just walk right in, grab your food and walk out without even having to talk to anyone. It's my job to know the ins and outs of the technology and any limitations, as well as do a little space planning if they are using special monitors or kiosk ordering. Schroeder: I'm actually surprised a lot of this technology hasn't caught on quicker. A lot of the issue with technology adoption right now is that while there are a lot of educated operators out there, many don't know what they don't know, so we have to bring that information to the table so that they can make their decisions. We're not necessarily the experts in technology, but we have to know the basics to get the conversation started. It's also important to understand who will speak more specically to the exact software or hardware they might need and how to implement that. This is an area that is changing exponentially right now, so it's a chal- lenge to anticipate what the next three or ve years are going to look like. And a lot of the facilities we design will be around for 30 years, so we really have to research and anticipate as best we can. Schumaker: It also depends on what you consider technology. There are many food technologies that are going to impact the kitchen in a big way. Just look at the alternative protein and meat on the market. The way those products are being made is going to impact the equipment of the future because today's equipment is not capa- ble of properly cooking and holding an Impossible Burger, which is being tested at Burger King and other chains. Because if you overcook an Impossible Burger or hold it too long, it turns into a crumbly pile of you-know-what. The foodservice equipment industry is a little behind, but I think what's going to drive the implementation of higher- tech equipment with sensing and other technologies are Millennials and Gen Zers who are interested in things like personalized nutrition and knowing where their food is coming from. "One of the solutions is having a central commis- sary and then a smaller dining space. This is espe- cially the case if you have a mobile app for students to use to order online and take their food outside of the brick-and-mortar space." — Tarah Schroeder, FCSI, LEED AP, Ricca Design Studios "These days, it seems that more of our clients want to design in the style of LEED but don't want to actually spend the money to get the project registered." — Brett Daniel, Camacho Associates on sul tan ts' Round table

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