Foodservice Opinions

Opinion pieces on the foodservice equipment and supplies industry from leaders and laymen from all aspects of the business, including dealers, distributors, design consultants and multi-unit operators.

College and University Foodservice: Sophisticated, Convenient, Comfortable and Sustainable by Design

In some respects, college and university foodservice is very much like its peers in the business and industry segment. Both face the challenge of keeping customers on campus and trying to address their need for speed of service in a flexible environment that meets a variety of tastes without compromising food quality. But to remain relevant, today's college and university foodservice operators need to keep learning and growing, much like the student populations they serve.

Roll with the Changes

Wow! It is hard to believe that this issue of FE&S marks the halfway point of 2013. Joe Carbonara and the entire editorial team have managed to bring you stories from all over the United States, giving you our take on the people and projects making a difference in the foodservice equipment and supplies community.

Looking Back at Another NRA Show

Energy-efficiency and better use of labor were among the key themes running through the 2013 National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago. 

Reliability Includes More Than Equipment Performance

I've always maintained that if a manufacturers' representative, either independent or factory based, does not call on me, then I can safely assume they will not assist my firm in taking care of our clients for any issue or potential problem that may happen once a piece of equipment is installed. This is still a relationship-based business, and we have built relationships with the reps to the point that the good ones know the type and quality of equipment we look for and will work with us as we design projects and specify equipment.

The Value of the Foodservice Equipment and Supply Dealer

We all know of the nursery rhyme about the little boy who put his finger in a leaking dyke to prevent water from flowing into his city. In the tale, his finger averts a potential flood as he contained the leak until help arrived to plug the hole. We all know water can be trickier than that and if one leak is plugged it will usually find another way to leak in because water always follows the least resistant path to where it is going.

Trade Secrets for Free

I was re-reading several past Parting Shot articles written by a variety of industry insiders, including dealers, manufacturers, operators, service agents and consultants. Not surprisingly, this feature consistently ranks among our most widely read sections of the magazine. The wisdom and passion that your peers express on the last page of Foodservice Equipment & Supplies often contains the most thought-provoking ideas that we print each month.

Taking a Closer Look at Service

As we prepare to celebrate the 50th anniversary of both the Commercial Food Equipment Service Association (CFESA) and Duffy's Equipment Service it struck me just how much the role of the service agent has changed over the past 50 years.

Open Kitchens? You Must Be Crazy!

One can say that open kitchens are a trend, thanks in part, to the concept of transparency that fast-casual chains continue to incorporate into their designs. There is not much that you cannot see in a Five Guys or a Chipotle restaurant while ordering or standing in the dining room. Although such casual dining chains as Macaroni Grill and Carrabba's have had open kitchens since their inceptions, I have noticed a larger number of casual dining concepts making their back of the house visible to patrons in the front of the house by showing a lot more of the trials and tribulations of the kitchen operation.

 

Put a Ring on It!

Or, customer engagement in an age of virtualization. Sometimes there is just no substitute for meeting with a customer or business partner face to face.