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A Q&A with Edward Nunn, business development manager, Hatco Corporation

When it comes down to ordering parts for foodservice equipment, there is no disputing the benefit of manufacturer-trained customer service staff. This minimizes downtime, saving money in the long run and time and aggravation in doing the job right.

Q&A with Markus Glueck, executive vice president, RATIONAL North America

In the foodservice industry, beverages have become big business. From signature offerings, upscale java, healthful juices and smoothies, and creative alcoholic concoctions created by renowned mixologists, drinks are now a draw for many establishments.

Q&A with Travis Hartley, national sales manager/executive chef, F.W.E.

Nothing makes a good first impression at a foodservice operation like sparkling clean glassware, dishware and silverware. But that doesn't happen by magic. It takes good procedures and the right equipment to have a "best-in-class" dishroom that works for both customers and staff. 

With some restaurants, speed of service can be especially challenging due to lack of back of house space.

To know what's going on in the restaurant industry, you need to ask operators.  And that's exactly what Foodservice Equipment & Supplies did for its 2018 Operator Forecast. Overall, restaurant operators thought 2017 was a pretty good year for business. When asked to explain why, 46 percent of survey respondents who felt that 2017 was a better year than they expected said it was because they added new items to their menu. Almost as many (43%) say their year was better because of increased on-premise traffic.

A Q&A with Carolyn Bilger, Senior Marketing Manager, Hobart Food Machines

Is there a benefit in sourcing your kitchen equipment from the same manufacturer?

Carolyn Bilger: We certainly think so. If you need to schedule preventative maintenance or a repair and you’ve got to call multiple people, that takes a lot of time. Or, if you’re in a deli and you have some slicers in front-of-the-house and some in back-of-the-house and they all operate and tear down the same way, your employees don’t have to learn how to clean multiple kinds of equipment.

Vector Multi-Cook Ovens from Alto-Shaam provide operators with unrivaled benefits for their business, including improved food quality, increased production, reduced labor cost, and the revolutionary ability to cook different foods in the same oven at the same time.

Unlike some other pieces of foodservice equipment, the cost of owning a commercial dishwasher goes beyond simply the price of the machine itself. How the machine consumes water, energy and chemicals can all have a profound effect on the cost of ownership over the lifespan of the machine. Having a dish machine that effectively balances these elements is essential to optimal performance and cost savings for your operation.

In order to get the most out of your equipment, it’s important to be knowledgeable about all the parts available to you. Learn how OEM parts can save you, the operator, money, time and labor.

For years, the three-compartment sink has been the primary option for quick-serve restaurants for cleaning large cooking equipment, such as pots and pans. But today, with advancements in technology, it just might be a better idea — in terms of saving water, labor and chemicals — to let an automated commercial dishwasher take over the heavy cleaning work. That’s exactly what the Arby’s chain of restaurants is doing.

Talk about how foodservice equipment needs to accommodate the smaller footprints in today’s commercial kitchens.

Faith Osborn: There is a lot of change in menus now and the way things are going in the restaurant industry. Basically, operators are looking for additional refrigeration and freezer storage options. Many restaurant kitchens have small footprints that can’t accommodate full-size equipment, especially in big cities. The industry needs to be aware that units are available that can adapt to these changes.

If you’re working in foodservice, you’re also in the dishwashing business. Dishes, silverware, glassware and everything else essential for food prep must be sparkling clean and sanitized. So, once you’re in the market for a new dishwashing system, it’s important to know about different types of machines available.

There are many things restaurant operators have some control over, such as the menu and staffing. But there are also things they have no control over, like the weather. Few operators know that as well as Patrick King.

Any purchase of kitchen equipment represents a major expenditure for an operation. So, most operators don’t think about replacing a piece of equipment until it’s on its proverbial “last legs.” But with the technological advances in some equipment categories — commercial dishwashers, to name one — it may be a good idea to replace a machine before the absolute end of its useful life.

America's lodging landscape has undergone a revolution. Big chains are diversifying with different brands or concepts to capture a wider demographic, and with this, amenities like foodservice have garnered more of the spotlight in today's hotels.

Evergreen Country Club Chef Randy Brown is finding that the Ovention oven helps him meet the challenge of producing high-volume food quickly. With its unique cooking capabilities, he can satisfy his customers’ desire for top-quality cuisine.

If there were such a thing as a "C-store Foodservice Endangered Species" list, you might see the roller dog and the slushie right up there at the top. It wasn't so long ago that those two items pretty much defined the state of foodservice in convenience stores. But recently, there has been a radical shift. Many c-stores now provide more than just a gasoline fill-up; they've now become a destination for fresh, creative food and drink.

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