Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

AUG 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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20 FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES AUGUST 2019 OPERATOR'S OPINION Q: How do you stay on budget and accomplish so much? A: Providing great customer service and great-tasting food does not cost additional money. In fact, by doing these practices, we increase our sales and prots every year. Q: What are you doing with patient foodservice? A: We focus on making sure our food tastes great because we believe there is no excuse to serve anything of poor quality or poor taste. We use the high- est quality of ingredients and make sure our recipes are perfect. We do not produce anything unless we can meet these two requirements. Q: Why is retail important in a hospital environment? A: Hospital retail operations are very important because hospital staff need a place to step away from their difcult jobs and decompress. Patients' visitors are often stressed when they are at the hospital and the retail operation offers them an opportunity to relax for a few moments with great food while remain- ing near their loved ones. The key to our operation is consistent change, great food and outstanding customer service. We regularly hear our customers com- plain that they don't know what to get because everything is so good. Q: How have your equipment choices supported your operation? A: Having the right equipment is one of the key components to an operation. If you expect your staff to perform at the highest levels, you must provide them with the proper tools in excellent working conditions. We do not have one particular piece of equipment that stands out from the rest because each piece of equipment is valuable. Steamers, convection ovens, steam-jacketed kettles, conveyor ovens, grills, broilers and rapid-cook ovens are all treasured because they each have a vital role to play in production. The only equipment that would stand out from the others would be the one that is broken, although this is rare as we purchase high-quality equipment and regularly perform preventative maintenance. Q: How has incorporating technology helped you? A: The technology that has had the big- gest impact on tremendously increasing customer satisfaction is our customer ordering deli kiosk in retail and the implementation of a spoken menu via electronic tablets in patient services. Q: What are the highlights of Hennepin's sustainable practices and green programs? A: Hennepin was the rst public hospital in the U.S. to sign Health Care Without Harm's Healthy Food in Health Care Pledge. This pledges Hennepin to provide nutritionally improved food for patients, staff, visi- tors and the general public, along with creating food systems that are eco- logically sound, economically viable and socially responsible. Nine years ago, we were also one of the rst U.S. hospitals to fully eliminate all manu- factured trans fats from patient, retail and catering menus. We use herbs from seven fresh organic herb garden beds located on a rooftop balcony outside the cafe in patient meals and cafe recipes. For patients belonging to the Hmong cul- ture, we grow herbs used in a traditional boiled chicken meal for mothers with newborn children. These herbs aren't available from traditional vendors. We participate in source-separated organics recycling, which includes composting food and soiled paper waste from the main kitchen and patient services. In addition, the Food and Nutrition Services team implemented and manages a community-supported agriculture program in collaboration with a local organic farm. The produce is delivered to the hospital kitchen weekly and is sorted for about 50 families each week. Q: What changes are you working on for next year? A: An increase in plant-based protein options for a new station that will be 100 percent meat-free. Q: How is healthcare foodservice making a mark? A: Healthcare foodservice has changed tremendously over the last 10 years. The industry now succeeds in provid- ing patients, staff and visitors with great tasting, great looking and cre- ative meals that are nourishing. Many healthcare retail operations are at a level where they compete for custom- ers along with local restaurants. The industry has a laser focus on under- standing the diversity of our customers and providing them with multicultural food choices. Q: What advice do you have for some- one new to the foodservice industry? A: Most important, you need to be a foodie and love working with people. Both food and people are the core of the foodservice industry. Be prepared to wear many hats and be good at wearing all those hats as a culinarian, human resource manager, nancial manager, sanitarian and even an equip- ment/building maintenance person.

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