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Buyer's Guide
 

Shipping Policies

All shipments will be delivered curbside only. Delivery does not include inside delivery, unpacking, installing and removing packaging material. Liftgate service can be arranged in advance for an additional fee. Please contact Customer Service for date sensitive orders, or if you have a special shipping consideration such as “difficult to access”.

If our shipping carrier determines that your address is inaccessible for delivery, please contact RestaurantMall immediately.

If you request delivery services directly from the carrier, you may be responsible for additional fees.

An extra charge will be added to your order for overnight or 2nd day delivery. Large, heavy or equipment items will not be eligible for overnight or 2nd day shipment. Express orders received after 12 pm Pacific Standard Time will be processed the following business day.

All shipments to Alaska and Hawaii require a shipping quote and customer approval before processing. We are unable to deliver outside of the United States or to Post Office Boxes. RestaurantMall normally ships via United Parcel Service and a variety of common carriers. We reserve the right to select the shipping method for all orders.

Liftgate

Freight delivered via common carrier may require liftgate service if your facility does not have a loading dock. If you choose liftgate service, an additional fee will be added to your order. Please note that liftgate service unloads your shipment to the curb; it is not an inside delivery.

Redelivery or Reconsignment

If the freight carrier attempts delivery and is unable to deliver for reasons that are within your control, redelivery fees may apply. Once a shipment is in transit, additional fees may apply if there is a change in the delivery address.

Delivery Guidelines

We go to great lengths to ensure that items are packaged properly and inspected before shipment. Even so, damage and loss may occur in transit. At the time your shipment is received, it is your responsibility to follow these guidelines:

Before you sign the delivery receipt (or bill of lading), and before the driver departs:

  • Verify the number of cartons.

  • Open, unpack and thoroughly inspect your shipment for any damage.

  • If damages or shortages are discovered, you must make a notation on all copies of the freight bill describing the damage or shortage in detail.

  • It is your right to refuse any shipment that shows signs of damage or shortage at the time of delivery. Please see the “Cancelled/Refused Orders” section of this policy.

  • Your signature on the delivery receipt is your acknowledgement that the shipment was received in good condition and without damage or shortage.

If concealed damage is discovered, save all shipping cartons and packing materials, and immediately request an inspection by the carrier and file a freight claim.

If packing materials are not saved, your opportunity to recover damages will be restricted. Failure to follow any of the above mentioned guidelines will also restrict your ability to return merchandise or file a claim for damages.

The freight carrier is responsible for loss or damage.

All shortages or damaged deliveries must be reported to RestaurantMall within 24 hours of receipt of shipment. RestaurantMall cannot be held responsible for damaged or lost merchandise that is signed for as free and clear of damage and loss.

Backorder Policy

We do our best to ensure adequate stock levels, but we may at times be temporarily out of stock on certain items due to manufacturers’ delays and/or unexpected demand. If you place an order for any merchandise that is not available, it will be noted on your packing list included with your order. If this should occur, we will not bill your credit card for the backordered items until time of shipment. All backorders are shipped standard ground service without any additional shipping charges.

Special Order Policy

All special order items must be paid in full prior to ordering. Special order items cannot be cancelled, returned or exchanged. We will notify you when your special order arrives.

Cancelled/Refused Orders

Special order items cannot be cancelled, refused, or returned. For regular stocked items (except for freight damage refused at time of delivery), if you cancel or refuse any part of your order after it has been shipped, you will be responsible for the full amount of roundtrip shipping and handling charges, plus any applicable restocking fees (minimum of 30%.).

Returns

No returns will be accepted for special order items. Before returning any item, you must contact Customer Service for return authorization and instructions. Requests for returns must be made within 30 days of receipt of your order. Returns are subjects to restocking fees (minimum of 30%) and returning freight.

All returns must be properly packed and shipped prepaid. Returned items and equipment must be in new, unused condition and must be in its original packaging. All returns will be inspected for damage or usage prior to issuance of a credit or refund. RestaurantMall will refuse all COD deliveries. Also, shipments that do not clearly state the RMA identification number will be refused.

Product Warranties

All products sold by RestaurantMall come with the standard manufacturer’s warranty.

Pricing

All prices are in US dollars. Occasionally, we may offer better pricing at www.restaurantmall.com. Rest assured that we will always place your order with the best available pricing. Prices are subject to change without notice. RestaurantMall is not responsible for typographical errors.

Tax

Sales tax is charged on orders delivered within the state of California. In other states, some manufacturers may charge sales tax for drop shipment orders.

Payment Options

Credit Cards: We accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express.

Pay by Check: If you would like to pay by check, please contact Customer Service to place your order.

Pay by Purchase Order: RestaurantMall does not offer credit terms. However, there are some exceptions, usually for government and large institutions. If you meet these requirements and would like to pay by purchase order, please contact Customer Service.

Note: Debtor is required to pay RestaurantMall for attorney fees and costs incurred to collect bad debts.

Pay by COD: RestaurantMall does not except COD orders.

When Will My Credit Card Be Charged?

Your credit card will be charged within 24 hours prior to shipment of your item(s).











Beverage Equipment
  Bar Service as a Profit Center

The number one priority of the bartender is to attend to the customer's needs.
Cut down on unnecessary footsteps to allow for more time in front of the customer. More time in front of the customer equates to more revenue.
Strategically place condiment holders for garnishes, salt rimmers and bar caddies for swizzle sticks, stirrers, and napkins so that bartenders have easy access to supplies.
Each station should have enough supplies for each bartender.
Every bartender should carry his/her own bottle opener.



Bar Service Checklist


Coffee Measuring Guide



Espresso Machines


There are three basic types of commercial espresso machines: automatic, semi-automatic, and super-automatic. All three types of machines are classified as one-group or two-group models, a designation of the number of brewing heads. Automatic models dispense espresso at the touch of a button that has been pre-set by the operator. Semi-automatic models will dispense any portion, based the amount of grounds in the filter holder. Super-automatic models are high volume units capable of dispensing a variety of flavors at the touch of an electronic switch.


Iced Tea Preparation

Here are some tips from The Tea Association of the U.S.A Inc. for preparing great tasting iced tea and sanitation practices for your iced tea equipment.
Iced Tea Preparation:
Automatic Iced Tea Brewing Equipment (3-5 gallon brewing system)
1. Place tea bag or filter with loose tea into brewing basket.
2. Place a clean sanitized urn with cover in position.
3. Start brewing cycle. Brew water should be at least 195F with a brew basket retention time of not less than one minute. A total brew cycle of 3-5 minutes is recommended.
4. When brewing is finished, stir contents of dispensing urn with a sanitized stirrer and put cover in position.
Automatic Coffee Machine Method/Pourover System (for each gallon of iced tea)
1. Place one 1oz. tea bag into filter basket and slide filter basket into place.
2. Place sanitized pot under brew basket and start brew cycle. Brew water should be at least 195F with a brew basket retention time of not less than one minute. A total brew cycle of 3-5 minutes is recommended.
3. When brewing is finished, pour concentrate into a clean, sanitized urn and add fresh, cold tap water to equal one gallon.
Traditional Steeping Method (each one ounce bag makes one gallon of iced tea)
1. Place tea into a clean, sanitized container for each gallon of iced tea desired.
2. Preferably, pour one quart of boiling water for each tea bag used and steep for 3-5 minutes. Minimally, tea leaves should be exposed to water at a temperature of 195F for approximately 5 minutes.
3. Carefully remove tea bag and add fresh, cold tap water to yield final quantity of iced tea.
Sanitation Practices for Fresh-Brewed Iced Tea Equipment:
1. Brew only enough tea that you reasonably expect to sell in within 12 hours. Discard any unused tea after 12 hours.
2. To protect tea flavor and to avoid bacterial contamination and growth, clean and sanitize tea brewing and storage equipment at least once a day as follows:
Dismantle dispensing spigots, hoses, storage reservoirs (removing gaskets, "O" rings, etc) and rinse in warm water along with other brewing and storage utensils.
Wash in hot water with dish detergent. Be sure to remove any encrusted soil deposits with a brush or cleaning pad.
Rinse thoroughly with clean hot water.
Sanitize by immersing non-stainless steel parts for at least 1 minute in hot water at 180F or by rinsing in a solution of warm water mixed with chlorine (minimum 50 ppm- one capful of chlorine bleach to one gallon of water). Do not use chlorine bleach on stainless steel urns or dispensers as it will promote small leaks.
Disassemble dispenser spigot and clean and sanitize according to manufacturer's directions.
Replace any worn gaskets, "O" rings, or any other badly scratched or damaged parts before reassembling.



Preparing Coffee Your Customers will Appreciate


As coffee reaches record popularity, American's coffee tastes are changing. Consumers are becoming better informed and more discriminating which is why it is becoming so important to serve a good cup of coffee. There are many things to consider, but one of the most important is freshness. There are 4 precautions to take to help achieve this:
1. Use clean equipment, free of oils and residue from washing or previous use.
2. Use fresh water, preferably filtered, not just tap water.
3. Brew at the correct temperature! Ideal water temperature for brewing is 195-200 degrees. Bring your water to a boil, wait at least 1-2 minutes, and brew.
4. Use high quality, freshly ground coffee
Another important thing to consider is the temperature retention for hot beverages. For plastic insulated servers temperature will drop approximately 20 degrees in the first hour, 10 degrees in the second hour and 10 degrees in the third hour. For glass insulated servers temperature will drop approximately 2-5 degrees every hour. Results are based on pre-heating servers with boiling water prior to use.


Why buy an electric glass washer?

Cleaner Glasses
Five Brush washers contact the inside and outside of the glass ensuring removal of tough soils like lipstick and fruit pulp that other methods of washing might miss.
Less Breakage
Washing glasses at the bar instead of moving them to the kitchen can reduce handling and breakage. It also saves valuable time.



Cooking Equipment
  Advantages of Microwave Cooking

They're easy to install
They're compact and take up little space
Employees can be quickly trained to use them
They use less energy
The microwave is well-suited for steaming vegetables, cooking delicate seafood and heating and preparing a variety of other types of foods



Advantages of using flexible gas appliance connectors

Improves sanitation and safety. Equipment can be easily moved and cleaned on a regular basis reducing dirt and grease build-up. That means improved cleanliness and reduced fire hazards. In most traditional installations, there are 6-9 inches of dead space behind stoves and grills. That space is blocked from cleaning and can fill with debris and grease, causing unpleasant odors and attracting insects and rodents.
Increases aisle work space and decreases the space needed behind equipment.
Easier movement makes servicing and cleaning easy.
Longer product life because torsion stress is greatly reduced.



Connectors, What are the Benefits

Flexible Gas Appliance Connectors improve sanitation and safety. Equipment can be easily moved and cleaned on a regular basis reducing dirt and grease build-up. That means improved cleanliness and reduced fire hazards. In most traditional installations, there are 6-9 inches of dead space behind stoves and grills. That space is blocked from cleaning and can fill with debris and grease, causing unpleasant odors and attracting insects and rodents.
Flexible Gas Appliance Connectors increase aisle work space and decrease the space needed behind equipment.
Flexible Gas Appliance Connectors allow for easier movement which makes servicing and cleaning easy.
Flexible Gas Appliance Connectors provide longer product life because torsion stress is greatly reduced.



Convection Microwave Ovens

Combining cooking technologies, when applied appropriately, will result in high quality food products, reduced cook times and reduced steps in preparation . Convection and microwave cooking have both proven themselves as stand alone technologies. However, when both are used simultaneously, the operator produces food that has a better appearance in a reduced time frame.


Convection Ovens

The demands of the foodservice industry always push for faster, more efficient ways of cooking. Convection Ovens answer the need. The multi-purpose Blodgett Convection Oven has been a standard in the industry since the early 50's. Schools, as well as hospitals, prisons, fine restaurants, donut shops, bakery shops, and quick-serve restaurants count on the convection oven to service their demanding needs.
Convection occurs when air, steam, or liquid (including hot fat and vegetable shortening) is moving. There are two kinds of Convection used in commercial ovens:
1. Natural Convection- Hot air naturally rises, while cooler air sinks. This basic fact causes a constant, yet slow, movement of air in a static oven as the heat source (elements or gas burners) work to maintain a set temperature.
2. Forced Convection- In forced convection ovens, the heating medium (air) is forced to circulate at a high speed causing more rapid heat transfer.
Convection ovens utilize a fan to move heated air throughout the compartment. The heated air strips the cool boundary layer away from the food and, in doing so, transfers heat energy faster than natural convection. We are all familiar with the effects of a wind chill factor. The same principle applies to heat. As the hot air is circulated around the food it cooks faster. In general, the faster the air moves, the faster the food, will cook. Try waving your arms around in a sauna and you will feel the effect.
Food Quality. Convection ovens, and traditional static ovens, both rely on convection currents to transfer heat. The main difference between the two is that the convection oven uses the principle of convection more efficiently by dramatically speeding up the convection force. By moving the hot air rapidly across the food, convection ovens strip the cool boundary layer away from the food more effectively and simply cook faster. In general you can expect the oven to cook approximately 30% faster than a static oven.
Another difference is that the required cooking temperature is lower in a convection oven (about 30F to 50F) and, therefore, the yield is improved. You can also achieve beautiful browning at a lower temperature, and basting is not usually necessary. Since the oven temperature is relatively uniform throughout, the food's surface will be more evenly cooked.
High Volume in a Small Footprint. Higher volumes of food can be cooked at one time in a forced convection oven because increased air circulation provides faster heat transfer to the food. In addition to this, the operator can load food on multiple shelves due to the relatively even heat distribution. If you have ever tried to use more than one rack in a static oven, you will understand just how uneven the heating can be without forced convection. As a result of this, convection ovens have a higher connection load, usually more than 30%, over similar sized static ovens. This does not mean they are inefficient, rather, they simply transfer more energy to more food during a shorter cooking cycle and, therefore, require a higher input load rating. The ability to cook more food in a comparable size compartment translates into a smaller footprint, which can make a huge difference in the total cost of operation due to the cost of floor space, hood space, heating and air conditioning.
A smaller footprint can also make a huge difference in the total cost of operation due to the cost of foot space, hood space, heating and air conditioning.
Roll-In Ovens. The very concept of the roll-in oven goes hand in hand with high volume, batch production. Considered more of a specialty oven, they are most often found in the school foodservice market and other operations where large volume batch cooking is required. Typically, the operator will purchase extra carts to enable preparation of one load while another is cooking. The cooked product can be very quickly unloaded while the next cart is loaded. This fast turn around increases the total production capabilities of the oven.
Most roll-in ovens are stacked, full-size, bakery depth units. However, some manufacturers offer large single cavity units, which have the same capacity as two single ovens.
The Combination. You can easily perform every cooking function and maximize results in our high quality Combination-Oven/Steamers. These ovens cook 30-45% faster than traditional convection ovens. You get more tools in one four cooking modes. Its versatility enables you to steam, combination, poach, roast, bake, retherm and combination fry.
Four cooking modes:
1. Steam-on-demand mode adds steam at any time (with either convection or Combi modes) to intensify the cooking process or add crust to breads.
2. Convection mode traditional filtered, circulated air.
3. Steam mode pressureless steam is excellent for rice, vegetables, and seafood. Plus Vario Steam where the oven compartment is temperature controlled by the steam is great for poaching, seafood, and sous vide.
4. Combi mode steam combined with hot air for faster, more moisture-laden cooking than conventional ovens, with no flavor transfer.
Cooking in the Combi mode helps wash out additional fat better than traditional cooking methods. Fried products can be cooked in Combi ovens with much less fat and without the extra expense of deep fat frying. And it's healthier cooking, too!
Combination-oven/Steamers are fast, flexible, and reliable.
No flavor transfer
Cook and reheat without covers
Reduces shrinkage
Maintains moisture
Maximizes floor space
Virtually self-cleaning
Stacked units provide maximum flexibility and cooking power with a min
imum of floor and hood space. All Synergy ovens accept full-size sheet pans no need for special pans or resizing your recipes.
One of the messiest jobs in the kitchen is oven cleaning. The right Combi helps make that chore easier you can save up to 20 minutes per day, per oven (vs. conventional ovens) when cleaning with an included hose (as compared to traditional ovens). You'll save time and labor costs, as well as reduce fumes in your kitchen.
For more than 153 years, Blodgett has been the leader in the foodservice equipment business delivering innovation, craftsmanship and performance. Plus, Blodgett has expanded its product line by teaming with premium manufacturers that share the Blodgett vision for quality and performance. Blodgett is dedicated to the school and institution market and provides product support before, during and after the sale. Our mission is to provide solutions for improving kitchen operation by offering products and support for optimizing the interface of food and equipment.



Convection Ovens-Sizing


Convection ovens force heated air, via fans located on the rear oven wall, over and around the food racks. This provides more even cooking speed, better heat efficiency, and a better product cooked more evenly and thoroughly. Oven temperature settings can be reduced from 25% to 75%. These ovens also accept heavier work loads for greater business volume.
SELECTION GUIDES CONVECTION OVENS
Meals Served
50 to 100 ............... 1 - 1/2 size convection oven
100 to 400 ............. 1 - full convection oven
400 to 750 ............. 1 - double convection oven
750 up ............... 1 - double convection oven, plus 1 single convection oven
From 750 meals up, consideration should be given to mobile roll-in or drive-in style ovens.
Using convection ovens instead of conventional ovens reduces energy requirements per pound cooked and at the same time increases production capabilities. Energy savings are especially dramatic when new reduced input convection ovens are compared with conventional ovens. Meat roasting using low temperature techniques requires up to 24% less energy per pound in convection ovens than in conventional ovens. Frozen lasagna heated in convection oven requires up to 25% less energy than when heated in conventional ovens.
Cakes baked in convection ovens require 32% to 47% less energy per pound than cakes baked in conventional ovens. Meat roasting capacity is doubled in convection ovens; casserole capacity is more than doubled; baking capacity is doubled, tripled and in some cases five times greater than in conventional ovens.



Deck Vs. Conveyor Oven

A deck oven lends itself to a wider variety of menu items. They are simply designed and usually require less servicing. The deck oven requires a higher skill level to operate. Conveyor ovens reduce bake times and out-produce deck ovens due to the dynamic of forced air. They also offer increased consistency. Because no tending is necessary, conveyor ovens can be used by lesser skilled employees.


Determining If Your Fryer Can Keep Up With Demand


Fryer productivity is usually measured by pounds of product per hour. Generally, a fryer that will handle a minimum of 80 pounds of French fries per hour is sufficient. In smaller, less demanding environments a 65 lb. fryer may be sufficient.


Frequently Asked Questions About Microwaves

Hundreds of visitors each year to the five Panasonic Test Kitchens around the world have provided a common thread for questions. I have compiled a list of favorites that help debunk many of the Old Husbands tales regarding microwaves ovens and microwave cooking. 
A common misconception of microwaves is that they cook from the inside out. Microwaves actually only penetrate up to one inch into the food depending on the density of the product and at that point the water heats up, creates steam, and cooks the rest by conduction, just like a regular oven.
Frequently Asked Questions About Microwaves:
Do Microwaves ruin food?
A microwave is like any other piece of kitchen equipment; there are things it does well and things it doesn't do well. I wouldn't try to bake bread in a deep fryer and I wouldn't try to cook a roast in a microwave. A microwave lends itself to foods that are high in moisture, like vegetables, and many pasta and grain items. Defrost ing and reheating and reheat foods is a job well done by a microwave.
Don't Microwaves emit radiation?
Microwave ovens, when properly functioning, do not expose users to any microwave radiation at all.
Are Microwaves only good for reheating?
No. Microwaves are excellent steamers. Always cover food that is to be cooked in a microwave. For the first half of the microwave time, the microwave heats the water content in the food to the boiling point...then the steam is produced. It is this steam that cooks the food so quickly. So, when you think of microwaves, think steam.
Do foods cooked in a microwave loose their nutritional value? Cornell University has released a study on the effects of different cooking methods on the nutritional quality of different foods. They looked at vitamin C and its levels after boiling, steaming and microwaving. It was determined that up to seven times more nutrients are retained with Microwave cooking than with the other methods.
A microwave is just like any other piece of equipment in the kitchen; there are some foods that it cooks VERY well and some it doesn't. But, when it comes to vegetables or seafood, the microwave is incomparable. Remember to add a little liquid, and cover the microwave safe pan when cooking; it keeps the steam in and speeds the cooking.



Fryer Tips

Keep your oil at the proper temperature.  (Around 340ºF.) Oil will break down at double the rate for every 10 degrees over 350ºF.  Keep your oil free of any contaminants such as:
Water- never load frozen foods over the fry pot.
Soup- clean, rinse and dry the pot extremely well.
Salt- never salt your food over the oil.
Food Particles- filter in a consistent manner.
Air & Light- keep fry pots covered when not in use.

                FRENCH FRIES - TEMP 3
50ºF

                                     Desired
                Size           Condition       Fry Time
              1/4 cut         Raw to done        5 min.
              1/4 cut            Blanched         2½min.
              3/8 cut         Raw to done        6 min.
              3/8 cut            Blanched          3 min.



Frying Oil Life

The life of the frying oil can be indefinitely prolonged by filtering the fat twice every day (or at the end of every shift) and then adding 10% new oil which is enough to rejuvenate the original oil. (If less than 10% of the oil was absorbed by the fried products, dip out enough to permit the addition of the 10% new oil. The oil removed can be used on the griddle or for other cooking needs.) For example, for a 35 lb. fryer, 3.5 lbs . of fresh oil must be added. With this method, high annual savings in fat costs can be realized.


How Steam Cooking Works

Steam is an extremely efficient heat transfer medium. It carries a great deal of energy which readily transfers directly to food (in steamers) or indirectly through a heat transfer surface (such as a kettle wall) and then into food. Steam is water (a liquid) that has been converted to its gaseous state by the application of heat energy. Heat energy typically is measured in British Thermal Units (BTU). The BTU is defined as the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit at sea level. It takes only 180 BTUs to raise the temperature of one pound of water from 32F (0C) to 212F (100C), the point at which it starts to boil. However, to evaporate that same pound of boiling water into steam requires 970 BTUs. As a result, steam carries many times the energy of boiling water. Steam readily gives up that energy load when it condenses back into water (condensate) upon contact with the food.<br>


How to Order a Gas Connector


Determine the type of equipment to be connected.
Determine the necessary inside diameter and length of the connector.
Determine the type of quick disconnect device needed for connection.
Determine the number of fittings needed for mobility.



Microwaves: Commercial Vs. Domestic

Commercial Microwave Ovens:
Are more durably built and easier to operate
Are built with heavy duty power cords, commercial quality relays and overload switches
They can withstand heat and humidity build-up in your kitchen
They are UL and NSF approved
County health inspectors and fire insurance policies require commercially approved microwave ovens.
Domestic Microwave Ovens:
Are built for home use - not made for abuse
County health inspectors can close down your establishment until domestic microwave ovens are removed
Fire insurance policy will not be paid if evidence of use of a domestic microwave oven is in your establishment
Domestic warranty void if used in commercial setting.



Oil Breakdown

According to several master fry chefs, water is one of the major causes of rapid breakdown of cooking oil. Ideally, if a balance can be maintained between the frying of dry items (i.e. breaded products) and wet items (i.e. frozen French fries) the life of the cooking oil can be considerably extended. When this is not possible, and most or all of the fried items are wet, several slices of dried bread can be nested between the twin baskets periodically, and "fried" to absorb the water which has been added by the wet products.


Oil Filters

If you fry breaded, watery or battered products in large quantities, you will need to filter more often. Remember to rinse well. Soap residue is the number one enemy of cooking fat as it accelerates cooking fat breakdown.


Oil Temperatures

Keep your oil at the proper temperature. (Around 340F.) Oil will break-down at double the rate for every 10 degrees over 350F. Keep your oil free of any contaminants such as:
Water - never load frozen foods over the fry pot.
Soap - clean, rinse and dry the pot extremely well.
Salt - never salt your food over the oil.
Food Particles - filter in a consistent manner.
Air & Light - keep fry pots covered when not in use.



Selecting the Right Pizza Oven


The most important piece of equipment in any pizza operation is the oven. Pizza ovens deliver high heat, rapid temperature recovery and a high production environment. These "specialty" ovens range in size from countertop to large, multi-level floor models. The oven is an expensive investment, and selecting the proper one is crucial. Some things to consider when selecting the right pizza oven for your operation:
How big a footprint is available for an oven?
What is the volume production necessary during the busiest shift?
What is the budget for equipment purchases?
Will more than one oven be needed, or is the unit stackable?
What is the skill level of the operator?
What is the available power source?
Will a ventilation system be required?



Some things to consider when selecting the right oven

How big a footprint is available for an oven?
What is the volume production necessary during the busiest shift?
What is the budget for equipment purchases?
Will more than one oven be needed, or is the unit stackable?
What is the skill level of the operator?
What is the available power source?
Will a ventilation system be required?
Our specialty is food service equipment and supplies. We are always ready to answer your questions.



Steam Cooking

Steam cooking works very well when you have a variety of foods that need to cook at the same time. Flavor begins to transfer from one food to another at 218 degrees while steam cooks at 212 degrees.


Steam Cooking . . .Uncovering the Possibilities

For years man has used steam to cook food, with the best example being the Chinese when they started using bamboo steamers thousands of years ago, as well as food wrapped in water-soaked leaves as among the earliest attempts to harness the tremendous energy and heat potential of steam.
Even with the long history of steam cooking like the pressure steamer as a bulk vegetable cooker, some operators have not considered steam equipment for their kitchens. This may be due to a few lingering misconceptions or a general lack of understanding about steam. The Cleveland Range innovation of the no pressure convection steaming principle in 1974 changed the market place. I hope this article helps to explain how steam works and opens your mind to steam cooking for the future.
Steam delivers a great deal of energy that readily transfers to the food by way of a steamer, or indirectly though a heat transfer surface such as a steam kettle wall. Steam is water (a liquid) that has been converted to a gaseous state. It gives up the energy load when it touches the food and condenses back into water. The best example of the gaseous state would be to view a combi oven (with a glass door) operating in the steam mode. Some operators believe that the combi is not working, as they do not see the steam. However, opening the door, you are blasted by the gaseous state of steam, which until it came into contact with the outside air wasn't visible. The steam gas condenses the moisture within the air and produces a vapor most people think is steam.
My favorite example of the benefits and effectiveness of steam would be to compare the heat of an oven and the steam generated by boiling water in your teakettle at home. You will notice that you can hold your hand in the oven operating at 400 degrees for a time period and not really get burned.
However, take that same hand and try to hold it over the steam generated from your teakettle (212F) and you could get an instant steam burn. That's the power of steam. It carries 3 times the BTU energy at 212F than the oven at 400F.
Today steam is used in both high volume central commissaries for prisons, schools and casinos and in small ala carte restaurants. Steam can be used in such a great variety of applications for the following reasons:
1. Steam is very forgiving. Because steam cooks at 212F it cannot burn the food. Even if you leave the product you are cooking in the steamer too long, it still remains firm and maintains good structure.
2. Cook multiple products in a steamer all at the same time with no flavor transfer. You can cook seafood, vegetables, meat, and even a cake in the same steamer compartment as long as you make sure the food does not drip down onto the food product beneath it.
3. Steam retains the highest amount of nutrients and vitamins of any other way of cooking. Therefore, it is the healthiest way to cook.
4. Vegetables maintain their brilliant colors during cooking, and enhance the presentation to your customer.
5. Steam cooks fast. You can cook some products in half the time of a convection oven.



Things to Consider When Buying a Fryer

What's on your menu?
How much frying will you be doing?
Are your fried foods fresh battered or frozen?
How large are your portions?
How many customers will you be serving at peak times?
What percentage of your customers will order fried food?
During peak times, how many pounds of product will you be frying in an hour?
How much kitchen space do you have available?


Things to consider when selecting a Microwave

What task do you what the oven to perform?
Rethermalize? Defrost? Boost Heat? Primary Cooking?
What food products will be used?
Vegetables and frozen foods? Seafood & Poultry? Red meats and bread products?
Where will the oven be located?
The answers to these questions are important in determining the power output, type of controls and exterior finish.



Tilting Skillets


If you are batch cooking pan fried, sauteed, or sauced products, a tilting skillet is an economical solution to your kitchen needs . If you are boiling or preparing large amounts of sauces in addition to the sauteed and pan fried products, your tilting skillet(s) could possibly replace your steam kettle or range stock pot. Tilting skillets can handle up to 40 gallons of sauces, stocks, or soups.


Tips for the Selection and Use of Kitchen Ventilation Systems

WHEN SELECTING:
1. Know what your local codes require for ventilation.
2. Know what your growth plans are. It is easy to buy a little extra now but difficult to add on later.
3. Know how the ventilation system is designed to perform. An improperly designed ventilation system will dramatically affect your monthly utility bills, as well as create an uncomfortable, and possibly dangerous, working environment.
4. Use Listed products. A UL or ETL listing on hood, duct, and fans may result in substantially lower insurance rates. Ask your underwriter for an assessment.
WHEN OPERATING:
1. Always service your fans. A loose fan belt or clogged intake filters on the supply air fan will affect the performance of the system. Results of letting this maintenance lapse can be anything from a lack of capture ability, resulting in smoke and grease escaping into the surrounding area, to the fans shutting down completely, or worse. Set up a regular maintenance schedule at the same time as you have your Heating/Air Conditioning units checked. The same company can perform both maintenance functions.
2. Always keep the exhaust duct clean. A regular cleaning schedule should be set up with a cleaning company. Frequency of cleaning is dictated by the type and volume of cooking, in some cases every 30 days; in other cases, every 6 months. You must make the determination.
3. Clean the grease filters as often as necessary. They are made to be cleaned in most commercial dishwashers or the pot sink. If they are not cleaned regularly, the performance of the system suffers. 4. To help in maintaining the surface appearance, coat all stainless surfaces with a LIGHT covering of mineral oil, then wipe dry. This soaks into the pores of the metal and makes clean-up easier. Do not use mineral oil on the stainless grease filters. It is not necessary to coat the stainless every time you clean, only to keep a film of oil on the surfaces.
The key to all of the above is maintenance. The ventilation system is more than just the stainless box that you see in your kitchen. It includes the grease filters, grease duct, exhaust fan, supply fan, supply fan filters, supply fan duct, electrical or gas controls, motors and belts, and design. If properly sized and properly maintained, it will save you money on your utilities. However, if the system is neglected, it will cost you each and every day of operation. The first cost of an improperly designed system may be lower, but the long term effect on Heating/Air Conditioning equipment, as well as the energy usage, will soon catch up with your bottom line.


Typical Preheat Times For Electric Cooking Equipment


Broilers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15-20 min.
Fryers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Average 6 min.
Grills to 325F . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5-8 min.
Tilt Fry Pan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 min.
Steam Kettle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10-15 min.
Compartment Steamer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10-15 min.
Ovens - Range . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20 min.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Deck 40 min.
Average Deck
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Convection 9-10 min.
Ranges-Hot Top . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50 min.
French Top . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .30 min.


Water and Steam

Always consider water treatment for steam equipment. Many service problems can be eliminated by purer water. Most steam cookers are operational on direct steam. When connected in this manner, a steam separator should be used to separate the steam from the condensed water. It is also best to install a steam pressure gauge on the incoming steam line before the final steamer connection.


When using the Microwave

Do not cook eggs in the shell. Pressure will build up inside the shell and it will explode. Do not reheat cooked eggs unless they are scrambled or chopped. Puncture the yolk before cooking eggs.
Do not heat oil or fat for deep frying.
Pierce the skin before cooking potatoes, whole squash, apples or any fruit or vegetable which has a skin covering.
Casseroles and sauced items should be heated in straight sided containers.
Plastic, foam and paper plates should not be used when heating high fat or sugar foods such as barbecue as the heat from the fat and sugar may distort the plate.
Most foods heat better if they are covered. Covering retains the heat that has been created, reduces dehydration and helps keep the oven clean. There should be an opening for steam to escape from the food.
When reheating in microwave, foods should reach 165 for 15 seconds.


Why buy a Commercial Microwave


Commercial Microwave Ovens:
Are more durably built and easier to operate
Are built with heavy duty power cords, commercial quality relays and overload switches
They can withstand heat and humidity build-up in your kitchen
They are UL and NSF approved
County health inspectors and fire insurance policies require commercially approved microwave ovens.
Domestic Microwave Ovens:
Are built for home use, not made for abuse
County health inspectors can close down your establishment until domestic microwave ovens are removed
Fire insurance policy will not be paid if evidence of use of a domestic microwave oven is in your establishment
Domestic warranty void if used in commercial setting.



Cookware
  All frypans won't work with an induction cooktop

An electric coil is positioned to create a magnetic field under the ceramic top. This requires that the cooking vessel also be magnetic. Cookware that is magnetic includes:
cast iron, carbon steel, 400 series stainless steel and multi-ply stainless steel that has a magnetic core.
Cookware materials that will not work with induction are:
copper, aluminum, glass, non magnetic stainless steel which includes 300 series of 1.0MM thickness/20 gauge or heavier.


Seasoning Frypans

Seasoning Mill-Finish Aluminum Frypans
Skillet should be clean and dry. Place skillet on heated surface and heat until smoke point is reached. Add salt to cover the bottom of the pan. Roast salt in skillet to a light brown color. Small amounts of salt will begin to stick to the surface of the pan. Remove all free salt, leaving behind the small portion of salt which has stuck to the surface. With a clean rag, rub shortening, oil, or butter into surface, using salt as a mild abrasive. Rub pan surface until all gray oxidation has been removed. Seasoning is complete when pan surface is cool. Oven mitts and pot holders are suggested as a safety precaution against burns to the hands and arms.
Alternative Seasoning Method for Frypans
Submerge pan in deep fat fryer for 10 min. at 450F. Take out pan and pour in granulated salt and rub in side of pan profusely with pressure using a dry rag until salt turns brown, then remove salt. Repeat until pan is cool. To clean after cooking with pan, pour salt in and rub out. This will clean and sterilize the pan. If soap and water are used, seasoning will have to be repeated. Foods such as tomatoes or rhubarb will remove the stains naturally without affecting the cooked food product. To remove stains from an aluminum exterior, use a non-abrasive cleanser. Cooking tools made of wood, plastic or smooth edged metal are recommended for use in aluminum pans.


Use and Care of Alumnum and Stainless Steel


Use and Care of Aluminum
Like most cookware, aluminum should be allowed to cool before washing or soaking. This is a simple safeguard against warping and prevention of accidental burns in handling. Wash after each use. Drying immediately after washing will help preserve appearance. Undissolved salt allowed to remain on an aluminum surface may cause pitting. Add salt to liquid after it reaches the boiling point and stir to dissolve it completely. Do not allow acid or salty foods to remain in aluminum or aluminum finished cookware for long periods of time as this may also cause pitting. Aluminum may stain when it contacts minerals in water and in foods. Automatic dishwashing may increase the amount of staining when the high heat of the drying cycle is added to minerals naturally present in water and the chemicals used to purify water. For that reason, hand washing may be preferred to preserve the attractive finish of aluminum cookware.
To remove food which may have burned on the inside of aluminum cookware, fill the pan with water to cover the burned food and simmer over low heat until particles loosen, occasionally scraping burned particles with a wooden spoon. After simmering, scour, wash normally, rinse in hot water and dry. Stains and discoloration that may appear on aluminum utensils can be removed by boiling a solution of two to three tablespoons of cream of tartar, lemon juice or vinegar to each quart of water in the utensil for five to ten minutes. Then lightly scour with a soap-filled scouring pad. Cooking acidic foods such as tomatoes or rhubarb will remove the stains naturally without affecting the cooked food product. To remove stains from an aluminum exterior, use a non-abrasive cleanser. Cooking tools made of wood, plastic or smooth edged metal are recommended for use in aluminum utensils. Sharp-edged tools such as knives, mashers, and beaters may scratch aluminum.
Use and Care of Stainless Steel
Stainless Steel is one of the easiest materials to clean and keep clean. Washing by hand in hot sudsy water or in a dishwasher usually is the only requirement for keeping stainless bright and shiny. Prompt drying prevents water spots. To remove burned on foods, soak and wash in hot sudsy water. Light scouring with a non-abrasive cleaner, nylon scouring pad or a commercial stainless steel cleaner will remove stubborn burns on the interior surfaces. High heat may cause a mottled, rainbow-like discoloration commonly called heat tint. Cooking certain starchy foods such as rice, potatoes, or peas may cause a stain on the inside of the pan. Both can be removed easily with any one of a number of readily available stainless steel cleaners. Undissolved salt will pit steel surfaces. Add salt to liquid after it reaches the boiling point and stir to dissolve it completely. Do not allow acid or salty foods to remain in stainless steel for long periods of time. With normal use, a stainless steel item will not dent, warp or chip. It thrives on exposure to air, so it is an attractive utensil to display in the kitchen.
Additional tips on cleaning Stainless Steel
Hot water with soap or detergent is all that is needed. If washing by hand, follow all cleaning by rinsing with clear water. Wipe dry with a clean soft cloth to avoid water marks, or allow to air dry. For discoloration or deposits that persist, use a non-scratching cleanser or stainless steel polishing powder with a little water and a soft cloth. For stubborn cases, use a plastic scouring pad or soft bristle brush together with cleanser and water. Rub lightly in direction of polishing lines or grain of the stainless finish. Do not allow deposits to remain for long periods of time. Do not use ordinary steel wool or steel brushes. Small bits of steel may adhere to the surface and cause rust.


Use and Care of Cast Iron

Seasoning cast iron: Wash thoroughly with mild dishwashing liquid. Rinse with hot water and dry completely with a soft cloth or paper towel. Never allow to drain dry, or wash in a dishwasher. Grease the inside of the pan with a light coating of solid vegetable shortening. Do not use salted fat (butter or margarine). Place the greased pan in a 250-300 oven and bake. After 10-15 minutes, remove pan from oven, drain off oil and return to oven for one hour. Remove from oven while hot and allow to cool naturally. Rust spots: If your cast ironware gets light rust spots, scour the rusty areas with steel wool until rust is gone. Wash, dry and repeat seasoning process.


Why use a stir-fry pan or wok?


When stir-frying meats and vegetables, the bite sized ingredients are stirred constantly and quickly over high heat in a small amount of oil. Stir-frying is an ideal way to preserve the color, flavors and textures of food, as well maintain their nutritional value. Using the proper cookware for stir-fry will ensure results your customers will devour. Because stir-fry pans and woks are slope sided and deep, they require less oil than a saute pan or skillet. Stir-fry pans and woks constructed of aluminum are the best choice because aluminum is an excellent conductor of heat. Because of this, heat spreads quickly and evenly across the bottom and up the sides, completely surrounding the food being cooked.
Food
  Cafeteria Trends

The American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) is continually monitoring the school foodservice arena to explore trends, issues and factors impacting its members. As part of these efforts, the Association conducted its third annual survey to track general trends shaping foodservice operations. Check out the results . . .
Bottled and flavored water is the top choice for new beverage introductions. Most respondents serve a wide range of food categories. Mexican foods, Italian foods and low fat foods are served by more than nine of every ten respondents. More choices/larger menus top the list of changes respondents say they plan on implementing in the 2000-2001 school year.
Most respondents plan to commemorate or promote National School Lunch Week (NSLW).
Most respondents say there has been an increase in breakfast and lunch ADP in the past three years. Staff shortages have increased noticeably since the 1999 survey, with a majority of respondents saying this is a significant issue facing their district's foodservice operation. Respondents report serving a median of two lunch entree choices for elementary schools, four choices for middle schools and five choices for high schools.
Pizza tops the list as the most popular lunch entree currently served at lunch. Most respondents plan on introducing new entrees, vegetables, side dishes, desserts and beverages in the 2000-2001 school year.
Wraps/sandwiches are the the most popular new entree planned for the upcoming school year. New chicken/turkey dishes and pizza varieties are also very popular.
Raw vegetables again top the list as the most popular new vegetable introduction.
Cookies are the most popular new dessert item planned for introduction in 2000-2001.


Campus Food Is Hot


Campus foodservice sales are jumping. Total sales at 100 colleges and universities that self-operate food service increased 8.9% over the past year and food purchases rose 8.5%, according to Foodservice Director's 2000 Performance Report. Last year students spent an average of $747.35 on meals up 8.2% over the prior year. Total food purchases for the group rose nearly 13% to $421 million up from $372.8 million in 1998-99.
Foodservice in contract-managed campus indicates that average sales-per-student have risen from $594.51 to $667.41 in the past year.
Total meals serviced for the 150 colleges audited in this year's study hit 247 million and 56% of them are credited to board plans nationwide.
The big push in the past year indicates switches from traditional dining to all-cash, retail-based systems, as college foodservices adapt to changing ethnic and lifestyle needs on campus. For example, coffee shops and global cuisines are very popular in retail food service. They are also very popular on campus.
The survey also revealed that labor expenses continue to climb even faster than foodservice sales. Last year, labor costs rose 9.4% and currently account for 37% of sales.


Ground Pepper

For better flavor, always use freshly ground pepper. The flavor comes from the oils of the sliced peppercorns.


Hospital Room Service

A new trend has hospital patients looking forward to meal times. Many hospitals are treating their patients more like hotel guests now. Patients choose their meal from a menu and have their food delivered to their room much like room service in a fine hotel. This new trend has been a positive change for both the patients and the participating hospitals. Patients are not only eating better, but they are happier. Hospitals have decreased their food waste and have more satisfied patients.


How to Prepare an Onion Blossom

Cut 1/2 to 3/4 inch off the top of a colossal size onion and peel (do not cut root end). Place peeled onion in the Onion Bloomer and pull down on handle. Lift up handle to release onion. Gently separate onion petals and coat well with batter so all petals are covered. Turn onion upside down; shake lightly to remove extra batter; coat with enough seasoned bread crumbs to cover each petal layer. Shake to remove excess. Gently place upside down onion flower in fryer basket and deep fry at 375-400 for 11/2 minutes. Turn over and fry an additional 11/2 minutes longer or until flower is golden brown. Remove and drain.




National Dairy Council Encourages Milk Consumption

Calcium Summit II Addresses Calcium Deficiency Among America's Youth
Experts strategize new solutions to reach and teach America's youth.
WASHINGTON, DC - January 17, 2002 - Hundreds of nutritionists, government officials and educators as well as many of the country's leading researchers gathered to develop an action plan to address a critical health concern facing children and adolescents: calcium deficiency. The goal is to encourage increased milk and dairy consumption among today's children and adolescents. Government data indicates that calcium intake remains dangerously low in the diets of children and adolescents. Poor eating patterns are partly to blame for this shortfall, with over-consumption of low nutrient foods and under-consumption of nutrient-rich foods such as milk, according to Mark Jacobson, M.D., professor of pediatrics and epidemiology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Schneider Children's Hospital and also one of the Calcium Summit II speakers. The problem is particularly troubling for teens: nearly nine out of 10 girls and seven out of 10 boys fail to meet current calcium recommendation's (1,300 mg per day for ages 9-18 years). Calcium Summit II, jointly sponsored by the National Dairy Council, Milk Processor Education Program and American College of Nutrition, highlighted research, which indicates that calcium consumed during adolescence may be one of the single most important factors determining a child's future risk of osteoporosis. New study reveals that milk is a nutrient dense and cost effective choice for school meals.
Rosemont, IL., December 10, 2001, Milk provides more calcium and protein per penny compared to any other foods served on school lunch menus, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association. Researchers at Kansas State University examined the nutrient contributions of five meal components of school lunches: an entree, milk, vegetable/fruits, grain/bread, and condiments, such as ketchup, mustard, or salad dressing. Nutrient analysis of the foods from two different elementary school districts was then compared to the protein per 100 calories and per penny, making milk a nutrient dense and cost effective component for school lunch.
True Foodservice Equipment Inc. is proud to announce that they have been selected to work in an ongoing Nationwide test program with Dairy Management Inc.
DMI is the marketing arm for American Dairy Association, the National Dairy Council and the US Dairy Export Council. The National School Food Association in Washington DC is also involved. Proper serving temperature is of the utmost concern to the Dairy Industry, and that is the reason they selected True. True is very proud to take an important role in this campaign to improve the overall health and safety of children.


Popcorn

Americans consume more than 16.5 billion quarts of popped popcorn annually. Because it is high in fiber and carbohydrates and low in calories (only 33 per cup) and fat, it is one of the most nutritious snacks. Popcorn's popularity means profits for purveyors. It generates 70-85% profit margins, stimulates beverage sales and requires very minimal labor. High quality commercial popcorn expands 40 times when popped. Medium yellow butterfly kernels are the best for popping. One ounce of unpopped kernels will yield about one quart of popped popcorn. The reason some of the kernels don't pop is lack of proper moisture. The proper amount of moisture in popcorn is 12.5%.


Promoting Healthy Eating Behaviors

Partnership Developed to Promote Healthy Eating Patterns. The American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Dietetic Association, the National Medical Association and the National Hispanic Medical Association announced that they are collaborating to improve the eating habits of children in schools. The partners signed a "Call to Action" that enlists schools and communities in an effort to promote healthy eating patterns for our nation's children.
Shirley Watkins, Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services at USDA, said It is in our schools that the opportunity exists to teach nutrition. But we can't teach nutrition if the rest of the school environment does not reflect the lessons being taught in the classroom. We need consistent messages. Discussions focused on the need to help children make the right choice in their diets and convincing people of the value of this initiative to improving the future of our children.
The partnership comes in the wake of some of the disturbing statistics emerging regarding children's eating patterns:
Only two percent of youth meet all the recommendations of the food guide Pyramid; 16 percent do not meet any recommendations.
Less than 15 percent of school children eat the recommended servings of fruit.
Less than 20 percent eat the recommended servings of vegetables.
About 25 percent eat the recommended serving of grains.
Only 30 percent consume the recommended milk group servings on any given day.
Only 16 percent of school children meet the guideline for saturated fat on any given day.
Teenagers today drink twice as much carbonated soda as milk and only 19 percent of girls ages 9-19 meet the recommended intakes for calcium.
Prescription for Change: Ten Keys to Promote Healthy Eating in Schools
1. Students, parents, educators and community leaders will be involved in assessing the school's eating environment, developing a shared vision and an action plan to achieve it.
2. Adequate funds will be provided by local, state and federal sources to ensure that the total school environment supports the development of healthy eating patterns.
3. Behavior-focused nutrition education will be integrated into the curriculum from pre-K through grade 12. Staff who provide nutrition education will have appropriate training.
4. School meals will meet the USDA nutrition standards as well as provide sufficient choices, including new foods and foods prepared in new ways, to meet the taste preferences of diverse student populations.
5. All students will have designated lunch periods of sufficient length to enjoy eating healthy foods with friends. These lunch periods will be scheduled as near the middle of the school day as possible.
6. Schools will provide enough serving areas to ensure student access to school meals with a minimum of wait time.
7. Space that is adequate to accommodate all students and pleasant surroundings that reflect the value of social aspects of eating will be provided.
8. Students, teachers and community volunteers who practice healthy eating will be encouraged to serve as role models in the school dining areas.
9. If foods are sold in addition to National School Lunch Program meals, they will be from the five major food groups of the Food Guide Pyramid. This practice will foster healthy eating patterns.
10. Decisions regarding the sale of foods in addition to the National School Lunch Program meals will be based on nutrition goals not on profit making.


Soup

Soups are becoming a fast growing menu item for many foodservice establishments. Part of this trend can be attributed to versatility. Hot and cold soups can be served as appetizers, lunch or dinner. Soup merchandisers and cookers offer the operator a quick means of heating and holding soups. They are also perfect for use in areas where customers serve themselves, such as salad bars.
Furnishing
  Benefits of Infant Seating

Having appropriate seating for children visiting your establishment is very important. Whether it's high chairs, youth chairs or booster seats, the right chair will please both parent and child. The child will be more comfortable and, depending on the style of chair, prevented from roaming around the restaurant. This will allow his parents (and other diners) to enjoy their dining experience. Proper youth seating also benefits your wait staff by allowing them to service a table more effectively. Without the availability of youth seating, parents are forced to place infant carriers and car seats on the floor which can block access to the table or aisle areas.
Safety is another benefit of appropriate youth seating. The possibility of children falling off adult chairs or patrons and staff tripping over a car seat on the floor are eliminated.


Bulb Shapes and Sizes




Crowd Control Posts


Crowd control posts should have a rubber base or soft pad to protect floor or carpet surface and prevent buildup of rust residue on tiles.


Proper Spacing Needed Between Tables and Chairs




Seating Regulations

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, 5% of all new seating must be designated for the handicapped.


Spacing Consideration

14 sq.ft.per person for spacious dining.
12 sq.ft.per person for cafeteria or restaurant.
10 sq.ft.per person for banquet, institutional or close seating.
Allow 18" for person seating from edge of table to back of chair.
Diagonal seating saves floor space. Deuce tables and wall spacing save the most space.
Allow 42" between squared tables for chairs back to back - leaves 6" to push out.
Allow 60" between squared tables for chairs back to back - leaves 26" service aisle .
Allow 24" between corners of diagonal table for customer access - no aisle.
Allow 30" between corners of diagonal tables for customer access - narrow aisle.
Note: Where space is limited, booths require only 8 sq.ft.per person, including aisle allowance.

Holding Equipment
  Approximate Food Holding Times for Heat Lamps and Enclosed Counter Warmers




Food Holding and Sanitation Temperature Guide




Merchandising Warmers


It has been said "we eat with our eyes" because the better food looks, the more people want it. Nothing keeps food looking and tasting more delicious than a merchandising warmer. From buffet lines to pass-through areas, convenience stores to fast food restaurants to school cafeterias, a variety of holding and display equipment with options and signage for every foodservice operation is available. Use custom food decals and merchandising signs that are designed to attract attention and stimulate impulse sales. Create hot food merchandising systems by stacking display cabinets and holding cabinets to produce a display and storage system, or to provide two separate heat and humidity zones.


Popcorn Poppers

Popcorn poppers are used in a broad range of applications that include fast food, leisure, arena and stadium concessions and traditional restaurant operations, wherever people gather. The aroma of buttered popcorn attracts attention.


Recommended Settings for Drawer Warmers


How do I use a coupon?
  After adding items to your cart, click the "View Cart" link at the top of this site to view your cart. At the bottom of the shopping cart you'll see a box where you may enter your coupon code.
Labor
  Addressing the Labor Saving Issue

Although there are many challenges facing foodservice operators today, the issues related to labor continue to rank as the most trying. Manufacturers that design labor-saving features and benefits in their products are addressing this issue directly by assisting the operator in controlling the costs connected with training, maintenance and time. Smallwares and light equipment can also incorporate qualities that are able to reduce costs in these areas.
Color-coded knives, tongs, dishers and a host of other utensils can positively affect many areas of concern in an operation which include cross-contamination, portion control and cleaning and care as well as the problems with employee turnover. Products that have temperature coded safety zones, as well as those that feature charts to identify proper portion sizes and other food safety requirements, can significantly reduce the time necessary for training and turnover is still one of this industry's number one challenges.
When looking to save on labor and energy costs, the operator should not ignore product maintenance. For example, today's complement of highly-polished stainless buffet service offers an elegant look, and in most cases, needs only a few simple strokes with a soft cloth to restore the finish. Dish and glass racks that provide enough space for superior cleaning, rinsing and drying not only eliminate embarrassing situations in the front of the house, but also save on chemicals, energy and labor. And, when choosing countertop warmers, ones that can take a refrigerated product to a piping hot state and then thermostatically control the safe serving temperature should be considered. Energy costs can be cut if the unit focuses the heat inside the unit on the food product. Cleaning and care can be minimal if the inside surface has a smooth or non-stick property since deposits can merely be wiped away.
At most foodservice conferences, operators from both the commercial and non-commercial segments plead for manufacturers to develop equipment that is simple to operate and helps keep costs in control over time. When choosing smallwares and light equipment, subtle differences in everything from pots/pans to serving lines can offer positive results. Products that can take some abuse, are easy to operate and easy to clean and maintain will begin saving money immediately. They will provide the long-term value operators need and have asked for.


Clean First Impressions

Meeting Health Department and HACCP regulations, improving aesthetics, and preventing slip and fall accidents are all good reasons for cleaning. Foodservice managers implement formal cleaning procedures to make that all-important first impression on patrons. Facilities that look, smell, and feel clean present an inviting image that can carry over to the positive dining experience.
By making cleaning tasks easier to perform, workers are motivated to clean more thoroughly and more often. Begin to evaluate every piece of cleaning equipment for its value in helping to improve productivity, promote worker safety, and protect your facility's professional image.
Improving productivity starts with analyzing the area to be cleaned. Is it a long unobstructed hallway, restroom, or a congested space such as a kitchen? Consider the cleaning equipment needed for the task and ensure that workers know which equipment to use. A color-coded mopping system is an important part of eliminating cross contamination from rest- rooms being transferred into the food preparation area. Workers can quickly identify color-matched buckets, wringers, and mops designated for kitchen or restroom.
Features such as the foot-activated emptying mechanism on the EZMT's Mop Bucket can drain a bucket directly over a floor drain, eliminating back strain caused by lifting filled buckets into drainage sinks and reducing worker contact with the contaminated cleaning liquids.
The wringer must accommodate a wide range of mop styles and sizes. Mops come in various weights (ounces) or generic sizes. Mop construction is often dictated by the cleaning application, and the user's ability to launder mops, thus prolonging mop life. Blended yarns, loop ends and tailbanding greatly enhance mop performance and life expectancy. The key is matching the cleaning application to the right mop for task. A Flat Mop, for example, can clean more square feet per hour than conventional string wet mops, a 30% improved productivity rate. It, too, has a foot-operated release for time and labor savings and quickly cleans large, unobstructed areas. A qualified sales rep can help explain, demonstrate and recommend cost effective mop alternatives and mopping techniques.
Worker productivity is affected by cleaning ergonomics. Studies have shown that tasks associated with cleaning can be leading contributors to worker safety, health and morale issues.
Improper posture causes workers to tire and ache, miss time, work slower, and perform poorly. Ergonomically designed equipment suited to both the tasks and worker stature greatly improves this area. High-sided mop bucket/wringer systems require workers to lift heavy water-laden mops several extra inches for wringing. This repetitive lifting can result in fatigue and back strain, particularly for small stature workers. The mop handle also plays an important role. Handles designed to minimize force and leverage, like the Swivel Grip Mop Handle, can make the difference between comfort and injury. Take time to examine and understand the features of ergonomically designed products and test manufacturer's claims for accuracy.
Your professional image includes every point of exposure. A vacationing family stopping for lunch often utilizes the restroom before taking a table. Offensive odors and overflowing wastebaskets can impact their dining decision. Installing an automatic odor control system can dispel odors and negative impressions. A programmable, metered spray unit formulated with organic oil extracts, such as the SeBreeze System, can effectively treat up to several thousand cubic feet without your assistance.
Labor issues in the foodservice industry will remain a vital concern as cleaning regulations become more demanding. The foodservice operator must meet those demands while taking measures to control costs and grow business. It's you that must choose products that legitimately improve productivity, promote safety, and protect your professional image. And in the end, it's patrons who will be loyal to facilities that look, smell, and feel fresh and clean.


How much money will a food processor save you?

Use the following formula based on actual figures for your operation.
1. Total length of time to process all items (items that are now processed by hand and the number of people and hours that are required for completion of those functions by hand)
2. The length of time these same functions will take one person using a food processor.
3. Subtract the lessor time (2) from the greater time (1).
4. Multiply the number of hours saved by the hourly wage paid to get the daily savings.
5. Multiply the daily savings by the number of operating days per year. This will give you gross first year savings.
6. Subtract the cost of the food processor from the gross first year savings. This gives you a net first year savings. Each year thereafter the savings is the full amount.



Ideas on Finding and Keeping Employees

Getting referrals from your current employees, especially a good employee, makes it more likely that the new worker will fit in well with the rest of the team. New staff members brought in by other workers also tend to be more reliable, because they don't want to reflect poorly on the people who referred them. To encourage referrals, offer incentives to employees who refer new workers that stay for a certain time period.
Train to Retain. Employee training is vital to the success of your operation, not only to improve the efficiency but as a means to retain employees as well.


Labor- Getting More Bang For Your Buck

Finding quality, affordable, dependable labor is a major concern with the foodservice industry today.
According to the National Restaurant Association, the average cost of wages and benefits for foodservice workers is 34% of total sales. So, how can foodservice operators control their labor costs? The first thing that comes to mind is to improve productivity among existing workers.
By designing your restaurant's kitchen to be more efficient and save steps for employees, you result in longer employee retention, better job satisfaction and increased productivity levels.
Methods of saving steps can include arranging equipment so prepared food moves logically toward the dining room. Compact refrigerators under worktables reduce trips to the walk-in freezer, and thus worker fatigue. Streamlining operations on one level, including the kitchen, storeroom and loading dock also saves valuable time.
Purchasing kitchen equipment that automates tasks and reduces the amount of manual labor needed is a time saving solution. Many manufacturers produce smart equipment that even the most inexperienced employee can operate. Equipment such as food processors, slicers, microwaves, steamers and a host of other items can save employees lots of valuable time.
A variety of cooking equipment will allow you to program a number of cooking functions. All kitchen staffers need to do is select the proper number for the food they just placed in the cavity. Programmable equipment also enables operators to reduce the amount of training required to produce uniformly consistent, quality meals.
Using equipment such as blast chillers allows the chef to prepare a dish, then quick-chill it down to near freezing. This process maintains the food safely for days. Then when a customer orders a particular dish, even if the chef isn't present, his apprentice or another kitchen worker can rewarm it for serving.
Workers who are physically comfortable are happier and more productive and many manufacturers have addressed this by offering ergonomically designed equipment and supplies. These products also reduce the number of repetitive stress injuries incurred on the job.
Proper training is also crucial to increasing productivity among employees. Although the initial time investment may be great, your return on investment will be quickly realized. Employees who have been properly trained will make less mistakes, feel more comfortable and have more job satisfaction.
Making smart choices when choosing equipment for your operation coupled with proper training of employees will not only make your operation more efficient but it will save you time and money.



Labor Saving Tips

Programmable equipment allows operators to reduce the amount of training required to produce uniformly consistent, quality meals. In many cases, you can store cooking procedures for up to 75 different meals.
Having casters on kitchen equipment enables you to disconnect and move equipment quickly and easily. It also allows easier access for cleaning.
Multitask equipment can be a big labor savor for your operation. Combining different functions in a single piece of equipment not only saves space but also can increase worker productivity by saving steps.


Some Saving Trips Tips To Remember


When you bring coffee, bring cream.
When you bring salads, bring the pepper mill.
When you bring entrees, bring ketchup.
When you bring tea, bring lemon.
When you bring soup, bring crackers.
When you bring bread, bring butter.
When you bring drinks, bring straws.
When you bring pizza, bring cheese.
When you bring the check, bring a smile.



What if I take the time to train my employees, and they leave?

Training can be time-consuming and represent a considerable investment, but it is essential to your restaurant's success. The following tips can be incorporated into any training program.
Preparation
Preparation is essential to effective training. The trainer should be very familiar with the subject matter and should have a detailed training plan in proper sequential order. If any equipment or supplies will be used for the training the trainer should have it ready. Schedule training for slow times.
Presentation
Actions speak louder than words! Showing employees how to do something is just as important as telling them how to do something especially if English is their second language. Trainers should also avoid using technical terms and jargon when talking to all new employees until they've explained these terms. Offering an explanation of why employees need to do things may help them retain the information better. Ask and encourage questions along the way and break up the training into small manageable chunks.
Practice
Once employees have heard and seen what they need to do, it's time for them to practice. Supervise the employees, but don't smother them. Over time the trainee should assume more and more of the job responsibilities as you wean yourself away from the trainee.
Praise
Praise employees for doing things right. Make this feedback immediate and specific.

Prep Equipment
  Cross Contamination

Cross-contamination is an extremely important issue in today's foodservice. Educate your staff on the hazards of cutting different products on the same cutting surface without a thorough cleaning.


Finding A Slicer That Will Make The Cut

There are many things to consider when selecting a slicer. Performance, consistency, construction, reliability. All weigh heavily in the selection process.
When considering performance, one true test of a slicer is its ability to slice tough products. Cheese is actually considered to be a tough product. The knife motor needs to be powerful enough so that it will not slow or get bogged down when the blade makes contact with the cheese. There are two types of drive systems on the market today, gear drive and belt drive. With a gear driven knife motor the gears lock into one another resulting in a direct transference of power. The gears provide more torque when slicing the product and will not slip, stretch, break or stall under heavy loads as can happen with belt driven motors.
Another aspect of performance is the consistency and precision of the cut. All slicers can create thick slices but only a high quality slicer can create slices so thin you could read a paper through it. Why is that important? Thin slices enhance the taste and tenderness of the meat. Also, for sandwich operations, thin slices fold more, which create an appearance of a much larger amount of meat. The thickness of the product is set with the table adjustment mechanism. There are two basic designs of table adjustment mechanisms, one is gear, and the other is a plastic cam. With a gear driven design, once you set the table, it will not move. With a plastic cam table adjustment, a locating pin rides in the groove of the cam. After continuous use the plastic will eventually start to wear and give way and will not hold its tolerance.
You should also consider the construction of a slicer. It will affect both the cleanability and the sanitation of the slicer. The metal of choice for the foodservice industry is stainless steel. Stainless is resistant to corrosion and pitting which is caused by many acidic foods. Many economy or compact slicers are constructed of aluminum. Because it is porous and has a tendency to pit, aluminum is not the ideal choice for a slicer. Food particles and bacteria can become lodged in these pits making it difficult to thoroughly clean and impossible to sanitize.
There are many questions you should ask yourself when making a decision on which slicer to purchase. What types of product you will be slicing? How many hours will the slicer be used per day? What safety features are important to you? How much do you have budgeted for the slicer? You should also look at the out of warranty costs to maintain and use the unit. Taking everything into consideration will help you make an informed choice that will result in your complete satisfaction.


Food Preparation and Storage Equipment

The equipment in your kitchen should meet industry and regulatory standards. The following are some standard NSF requirements for food prep and storage equipment.
Food contact and food-splash surfaces must be easy to reach, easy to clean, nontoxic, nonabsorbent, corrosion resistant, non-reactive to food or cleaning and should not leave a color, odor or taste to food.
Should be rounded with tightly sealed edges and corners
Should be designed with solid and liquid waste traps that are easy to remove.
Consider replacing items if:
They're worn out
They no longer meet local health codes
They are no longer time or cost effective
They make it more difficult to adhere to your operation's HACCP plan


Grinders and Slicers

Running butter through the meat grinder before grinding onions, meats, cheese, nuts, or raisins will make cleaning easier.
After using the electric meat grinder, put several slices of bread through the grinder. This will aid in cleaning fat and grease out of the grinder.
It is important to clean your slicer thoroughly before and after sharpening your knife.
Employing high school students? Federal law prohibits slicer operation by persons under 18.



High Volume Portion Control

If a 1/4 ounce overweight occurs with each serving and 400 students are served this extra 1/4 ounce that day, 61/4 pounds of additional food have been used. In this example if the product cost $1 per pound, the loss over the year would be $1,500.


How much money will a food processor save you?

Use the following formula based on actual figures for your operation.
1. Total length of time to process all items (items that are now processed by hand and the number of people and hours that are required for completion of those functions by hand)
2. The length of time these same functions will take one person using a food processor.
3. Subtract the lessor time (#2) from the greater time (#1).
4. Multiply the number of hours saved by the hourly wage paid to get the daily savings.
5. Multiply the daily savings by the number of operating days per year. This will give you gross first year savings.
6. Subtract the cost of the food processor from the gross first year savings. This gives you a net first year savings. Each year thereafter the savings is the full amount.


How to Prepare an Onion Blossom

Cut 1/2 to 3/4 inch off the top of a colossal size onion and peel (do not cut root end). Place peeled onion in the Onion Bloomer and pull down on handle. Lift up handle to release onion. Gently separate onion petals and coat well with batter so all petals are covered. Turn onion upside down; shake lightly to remove extra batter; coat with enough seasoned bread crumbs to cover each petal layer. Shake to remove excess. Gently place upside down onion flower in fryer basket and deep fry at 375-400 for 11/2 minutes. Turn over and fry an additional 11/2 minutes longer or until flower is golden brown. Remove and drain.



Work Table Height

Correct working height of work tables reduces fatigue and permits an even flow of work.
There should be 4" to 6" between the work surface and the bend of the elbow of the worker.
The immediate work area may be adjusted to the proper height by: using a 2" wooden chop board across a 12"x20" pan (the depth of the pan will depend upon the height the work area needs to be raised).

Refrigeration
  Blast Chillers Aid in Food Safety

Because of increased regulations and concerns, food safety is a major issue for the operator. 56% of foodborne illness is caused by improper cooling. Blast chillers are designed to combat this problem. Blast chilling is the rapid cooling of cooked foods from 140F to 40F in two to six hours. It is accomplished with the use of cold convected air either by pulling heat from the food and or pulling heat across the food.


Care of Your Refrigeration

Dirty condensers are the greatest contributors to compressor failure. Location will vary the frequency of cleaning, but it is recommended that the condenser on all your refrigeration equipment be cleaned once a month.
How To Clean The Condenser
1. Disconnect the electrical power to the unit.
2. Remove the louvered grill.
3. Vacuum or brush the dirt, lint, and paper from the finned condenser coil.
4. If you have a significant dirt build up you can blow out the condenser with compressed air. (Caution must be used to avoid eye injury. Eye protection is recommended.)
5. When finished be sure to replace the louvered grill. The grill protects the condenser.
6. Reconnect the electrical power to the unit.


Clean Fridge

All refrigeration requires constant cleaning. Wipe interiors as often as possible and wipe the exteriors daily. Be sure to also wipe down the gaskets daily by using a mild detergent and soft cloth or sponge. Dirty gaskets lead to loss of refrigerated air, increased electricity cost, and premature failure of the gaskets.


Cold . . . It Does Your Milk Good!

There are two major issues when looking for a milk cooler: Safety and Product Quality. Our goal when formulating a milk cooler is to have milk served to our kids at the proper temperature. Milk like all dairy products is very sensitive and is best when served cold. One degree can greatly affect product quality. The reason more adults do not drink milk is because milk was not properly chilled when they were young. The resources are available today to serve milk at its best.
What do you look for first? Forced-air is key. Forced air is essential for high performance and maximum cooling. The alternative to forced air is cold wall construction. Cold wall construction will freeze milk at the walls and milk in the center will be warm. Forced air cooling allows you to store milk overnight without freezing. For best product protection, milk should be held at 32F to 38F. Your milk cooler should be able to hold these temperatures without the worry of ice build up. Average shelf life at 40F is 2-5 days. Shelf life decreases rapidly at higher temperatures.
There are many features that you should also take into consideration. Look at the energy efficiency. Models using a minimum of electricity are built with superior insulation.
How does the interior look? A white anodized aluminum interior is easy to clean and presents a bright sanitary appearance. You will also want to make sure the interior won't rust, peel or chip. An exterior mounted digital temperature monitor is a very important feature and should be standard with your cooler.
Wrap it all up in 300 series stainless steel with a heavy duty reinforced interior bottom and you have a milk cooler that will never let you down.


Floor Drains

Since walk-in refrigeration units and ice machines both require waste disposal drains, expensive plumbing costs may be eliminated by planning the location of the ice machine where one floor drain will service both units.


Ice Machines: Selecting the Best

Picture this: Your ice machine has just died and it must be replaced. The line up of products that the ice machine industry offers has changed dramatically in the last 10 years. So, what do you do?
Step 1: Gather information on the existing product. Get the brand and the model number for the modular unit and the bin. Note if the unit is air-cooled; water-cooled or remote air-cooled. If it is remote air cooled, you will have to find the remote condenser and get its model number as well. Take a look at the line routing, its length and tubing size. Note the refrigerant type.
Step 2: Ask Questions:
Did the machine make enough ice?
Did it put out too much heat?
Was it too loud?
Are you planning to expand?
Was the bin big enough?
What is the electrical capacity available?
Would two machines be better than one, with a smaller one in an under the counter spot closer to where the ice is used?
Changing to remote system? Where will the condenser go?
Water filters?, If they don't have them, add them to the list
Step 3: Answer the condenser question - Which one is ideal? A water-cooled model is quiet, easy to install and does not emit excess heat into the room. The trade off is the cost of the water. In many areas, water-cooled machines are not even allowed, so check with the local authorities. Self-contained air-cooled machines are the easiest and cheapest to install however, they make the most noise and exhaust heat into the surrounding air. Remote air-cooled models have a low noise advantage over water-cooled and use no more water than a self contained air-cooled, but they are expensive to install.
Step 4: Size the machine correctly for the use. Many ice machines are too small for the application. If an ice machine runs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week without shutting off, it is too small. Not only is it wearing out prematurely, it does not give the user any ice making margin they will occasionally have to buy ice. Do not specify a bin that is too small, because it cannot hold the amount of ice needed. Small bins may also be too low for ease of use. Having a bin that is too large can also be a problem, as ice that is not used tends to melt together and then is hard to remove from the bin (a little cold water poured on it helps to loosen it up). Remember: When specifying a combination of ice machine and bin or dispenser, be sure that all the necessary adapter kits are on the list.
Step 5: What is the desired ice form? Flaked, Nugget, or Cube? Flaked ice is best for packing food like fish or chicken, many supermarkets use it for displays. Nugget ice is good for that, but also makes a decent beverage ice. Cubed ice is universal, good for almost every application.
Ice Sizing Guidelines:
Fast Food
9 Lb. Per Customer or 7.5 Lb. Per Seat
2 Oz. Per 8-10 Oz. Drink
4 Oz. Per 12-16 Oz. Drink
6 Oz. Per 20 Oz. Drink
8 Oz. Per 32 Oz. Drink
Full Service
5 lb. Per Seat or 1.7 lb. Per Patron
Bars
3 lb. Per Customer
Supermarkets
35 lb. Per Cubic Foot
Healthcare
7 lb. Per Bed
2 lb. Per Employee
Hotels
3 lb. Per Room - More for Ice Chests
C-Stores-Customer Self-serve
4 Oz. Per 12 Oz. Drink
7 Oz. Per 20 Oz. Drink
10 Oz. Per 32 Oz. Drink
Cold Plate - Add 50% More


National Dairy Council Encourages Milk Consumption

Calcium Summit II Addresses Calcium Deficiency Among America's Youth
Experts strategize new solutions to reach and teach America's youth.
WASHINGTON, DC - January 17, 2002 - Hundreds of nutritionists, government officials and educators as well as many of the country's leading researchers gathered to develop an action plan to address a critical health concern facing children and adolescents: calcium deficiency. The goal is to encourage increased milk and dairy consumption among today's children and adolescents. Government data indicates that calcium intake remains dangerously low in the diets of children and adolescents. Poor eating patterns are partly to blame for this shortfall, with over-consumption of low nutrient foods and under-consumption of nutrient-rich foods such as milk, according to Mark Jacobson, M.D., professor of pediatrics and epidemiology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Schneider Children's Hospital and also one of the Calcium Summit II speakers. The problem is particularly troubling for teens: nearly nine out of 10 girls and seven out of 10 boys fail to meet current calcium recommendation's (1,300 mg per day for ages 9-18 years). Calcium Summit II, jointly sponsored by the National Dairy Council, Milk Processor Education Program and American College of Nutrition, highlighted research, which indicates that calcium consumed during adolescence may be one of the single most important factors determining a child's future risk of osteoporosis. New study reveals that milk is a nutrient dense and cost effective choice for school meals.
Rosemont, IL., December 10, 2001, Milk provides more calcium and protein per penny compared to any other foods served on school lunch menus, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association. Researchers at Kansas State University examined the nutrient contributions of five meal components of school lunches: an entree, milk, vegetable/fruits, grain/bread, and condiments, such as ketchup, mustard, or salad dressing. Nutrient analysis of the foods from two different elementary school districts was then compared to the protein per 100 calories and per penny, making milk a nutrient dense and cost effective component for school lunch.
True Foodservice Equipment Inc. is proud to announce that they have been selected to work in an ongoing Nationwide test program with Dairy Management Inc.
DMI is the marketing arm for American Dairy Association, the National Dairy Council and the US Dairy Export Council. The National School Food Association in Washington DC is also involved. Proper serving temperature is of the utmost concern to the Dairy Industry, and that is the reason they selected True. True is very proud to take an important role in this campaign to improve the overall health and safety of children.


NSF Refrigerator/Freezer Regulation

NSF has revised the equipment standard for the construction and performance of commercial refrigerators and freezers. The revision of Standard 7 affects all buffet and preparation equipment. These types of units must maintain product temperature between 33F and 41F in an 86F ambient for a period of four hours. This new stricter standard will be duly enforced.


Reasons to Use Glass Merchandisers

Products and key brands are in front of the customer
Creates impulse buying, increasing product sales
Products and packages look their best because there are no broken packages
Consumers have easier access to products and have the option of self-service
See-through glass allows employees to stay on top of product inventory



Usable Space in your walk-in

Be aware that small walk-ins with only one door and a single aisle can have from 50% to 60% usable space. Larger walk-ins with multiple aisles and doors can drop usable space to 35-45%.
Safety
  4 Leading Causes of Foodborne Illness

Not cooking food to proper internal temperatures
Holding, cooling or storing foods at improper temperatures
Cross-contamination from improper cleaning and sanitizing of workspaces and utensils
Poor personal hygiene
The Centers for Disease Control estimate that each year 10,000 people die from foodborne illness. The above four things are responsible for 80% of foodborne illness and can be easily corrected with proper selection and use of foodservice equipment.


Bacteria

The following four pathogens are most associated with food-borne illness.
E.coli 0157:H7
Salmonella
Listeria
Campylobacter



Blast Chillers Aid in Food Safety


Because of increased regulations and concerns, food safety is a major issue for the operator. 56% of foodborne illness is caused by improper cooling. Blast chillers are designed to combat this problem. Blast chilling is the rapid cooling of cooked foods from 140F to 40F in two to six hours. It is accomplished with the use of cold convected air either by pulling heat from the food and or pulling heat across the food.


Burn Treatment

The objective of first aid for burns is to relieve pain, prevent contamination, and treat for shock. Usually, medical treatment is not required.
First Degree Burn
Indications: Redness or discoloration, mild swelling and pain, rapid healing.
Treatment:
Apply cold water applications, or submerge the burned area in cold water. Next, apply a dry dressing if it is necessary.
Second Degree Burn
Usually the result of a very deep sunburn, contact with hot liquids, and flash burns from gasoline, kerosene and other products. Second degree burns are usually more painful than deeper burns in which the nerve endings in the skin are destroyed.
Indications: Greater depth than first degree burns, red or blotchy appearance, development of blisters, considerable swelling over a period of several days, wet appearance of the surface of the skin due to the loss of plasma through the damaged layers of the skin.
Treatment:
Immerse the burned area in cold water (not ice water). Next, apply freshly ironed or laundered cloths that have been wrungout in ice water and blot dry gently. Next, apply dry sterile gauze or clean cloth as a protective bandage. Be careful not to break blisters or remove tissue. Do not use an antiseptic preparation, ointment, spray or home remedy on a severe burn. Keep arms or legs elevated if they are affected.


Cold . . . It Does Your Milk Good!

There are two major issues when looking for a milk cooler: Safety and Product Quality. Our goal when formulating a milk cooler is to have milk served to our kids at the proper temperature. Milk like all dairy products is very sensitive and is best when served cold. One degree can greatly affect product quality. The reason more adults do not drink milk is because milk was not properly chilled when they were young. The resources are available today to serve milk at its best.
What do you look for first? Forced-air is key. Forced air is essential for high performance and maximum cooling. The alternative to forced air is cold wall construction. Cold wall construction will freeze milk at the walls and milk in the center will be warm. Forced air cooling allows you to store milk overnight without freezing. For best product protection, milk should be held at 32F to 38F. Your milk cooler should be able to hold these temperatures without the worry of ice build up. Average shelf life at 40F is 2-5 days. Shelf life decreases rapidly at higher temperatures.
There are many features that you should also take into consideration. Look at the energy efficiency. Models using a minimum of electricity are built with superior insulation.
How does the interior look? A white anodized aluminum interior is easy to clean and presents a bright sanitary appearance. You will also want to make sure the interior won't rust, peel or chip. An exterior mounted digital temperature monitor is a very important feature and should be standard with your cooler.
Wrap it all up in 300 series stainless steel with a heavy duty reinforced interior bottom and you have a milk cooler that will never let you down.



Cross-Contamination

Cross contamination occurs when pathogens in one food are transferred to other foods that are not cooked or will not be cooked. The most common carriers are:
Raw foods to ready-to-eat foods
Food-to-food contact
Cutting boards
Utensils and dishes
Work surfaces and prep areas
Cleaning rags and dish towels
Hands
Prevention practices:
Store and prepare raw meats in separate areas from cooked and ready-to-eat foods
Dedicate specific cutting boards, utensils and containers to each food type
Finish one task, clean up and sanitize before starting another
Use dedicated, color-coded or disposable cleaning rags
In addition to soap and water, use approved sanitizers
Employees should be especially careful when working with:
Raw meat
Seafood
Eggs
Poultry
Shellfish


Cross-Contamination Guidelines

Cross-contamination is one of the leading causes of foodborne illness, but is also one of the easier problems to correct.
Dedicate specific cutting boards, utensils and containers to each food type.
Store fresh meat, poultry and seafood in the refrigerator where they cannot contaminate other food items.
Wash and sanitize cutting boards and knives before preparing each food item, and be especially thorough after preparing raw meat, poultry and seafood.
Separate raw meat, poultry and seafood from other food at all times in buying/storing.
Most cross-contamination problems stem from the following: Raw foods to ready-to-eat foods, food-to-food contact, cutting boards, utensils and dishes, work surfaces and prep areas, cleaning rags and dish towels, and hands.


Easy Food Safety Tips

1. Store cooked and ready-to- eat foods above raw food
3. Replace or sanitize buffet utensils every 1/2 hour
4. Never thaw at room temperature
5. Use products such as blast chillers and cooling paddles to cool food, not freezers and refrigerators
6. Create a daily cleaning and maintenance checklist and schedule
7. Have frequent employee training sessions on food safety
8. Ask your foodservice equipment and supply dealer for help. Many dealers have received formal training on food safety. They can provide cost-effective products that support a HACCP program as well as valuable information on constantly changing safety rules and regulations


First Aid for Cuts

Cuts without severe bleeding that do not involve tissues deeper than the skin should be cleansed thoroughly. There will be some contamination which should be removed before the injury is dressed and bandaged, especially if medical attention is delayed. Removal of foreign material in muscle or deep tissue should always be carried out by a physician.
1. To cleanse a wound, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Use ordinary hand soap or mild detergent.
2. Wash in and around the victim's wound to remove bacteria and other foreign matter.
3. Rinse the wound thoroughly by flushing with clean water, preferably running tap water.
4. Blot the wound dry with a sterile gauze pad or a clean cloth.
5. Apply a dry sterile bandage or clean dressing and secure it firmly in place.
6. Caution the victim to see a physician promptly if evidence of infection appears.


FoodHandler Presents: The Eleven Commandments of Food Safety at Your Restaurant

1. Train every employee about proper handwashing. Hands should be washed for 20 seconds, using a soft nailbrush to clean fingertips. Document the process and make sure employees know why handwashing is imperative. Monitor your employees' handwashing and use positive reinforcement to encourage this important practice. Handwashing is the number one thing YOU CAN DO to prevent foodborne illness!
2. Be a safe food handler by requiring strict personal hygiene. All employees should wear clean uniforms and hair restraints. Jewelry and artificial nails must not be permitted. Restrict or send home crew members that are ill - they must not handle foods.
3. Train and enforce a no bare hand contact with ready-to-eat foods policy. Wash hands and use alternatives such as disposable gloves, clean utensils or paper wraps to handle all ready-to-eat foods.
4. Obtain food supplies from reputable approved sources. Food should be inspected for spoilage and temperatures should be checked during all stages of preparation. This includes when food is received from the supplier, is placed in cold storage and is being prepared on the prep tables. When in doubt, throw it out!
5. Identify all potentially hazardous foods on your menu and keep them as cold as possible during storage and preparation. An internal food temperature ranging from 35 to 38F is optimal --- never higher than 41F.
Keep frozen food at a temperature of 0F. Safely thaw foods a day in advance under refrigeration.
6. To prevent cross-contamination observe time & temperature guidelines when storing and handling prepared food. Label prepared foods with product, preparation date and time and optimal temperature.
7. Keep foods out of the DANGER ZONE (41 to 140 F). Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold! Teach all crewmembers to use temperature charts and a stem thermometer. Check food temperature in two places -- the thickest portion and the center. Sanitize the thermometer stem before and after use with an alcohol swab.
8. Cook and heat-process food to above recommended minimum temperature (usually 145F, 155F or165F depending on the food). Memorize your minimum cooking temperatures. Post a chart for the crew.
9. Rapidly chill hot food to below 41F within 4-6 hours! Techniques to reduce cooling time include using an ice bath or shallow pans, cutting or reducing food, stirring food and keeping food uncovered. Be sure to check local regulations.
10. Reheat food to 165F + within 2 hours and hold at this temperature for 15 seconds. Hold hot foods at 140F.
11. Avoid cross-contamination of raw and ready-to-eat foods by hands, utensils and equipment. Wash, rinse and sanitize all food contact equipment. Keep raw products separate from ready-to-eat foods.


Food Holding and Sanitation Temperature Guide




Food Preparation and Storage Equipment

The equipment in your kitchen should meet industry and regulatory standards. The following are some standard NSF requirements for food prep and storage equipment.
Food contact and food-splash surfaces must be easy to reach, easy to clean, nontoxic, nonabsorbent, corrosion resistant, non-reactive to food or cleaning and should not leave a color, odor or taste to food.
Should be rounded with tightly sealed edges and corners
Should be designed with solid and liquid waste traps that are easy to remove.
Consider replacing items if:
They're worn out
They no longer meet local health codes
They are no longer time or cost effective
They make it more difficult to adhere to your operation's HACCP plan


Food Safety in Your Operation

Practicing and monitoring food safety must occur in all of the following areas of your operation.
Receiving
Inspect deliveries. Product should be in good condition and received at the proper temperature
Label and store products immediately
Instruct employees to use the practice of First-In, First-Out Storage
Freezers should hold food at 0F or below
Refrigerators should store food at 40F or below
Temperature range of dry storage areas should be 50F to 70F Hot and Cold Prep
Proper hand washing is essential. When changing tasks, employees should wash hands thoroughly
Use color coded cutting boards, utensils and containers to prevent cross contamination
Have dedicated containers for ice and cleaning solutions. Never use them interchangeably
Cooking
Food must be cooked to a safe minimum internal temperature
Instruct employees on the proper use and calibration of temperature devices
Cooling
Food to be held for later service must be cooled to 70F within two hours and below 40F within four hours
Products such as cooling paddles and blast chillers were designed for this purpose
Holding & Serving
Keep hot foods hot, and cold foods cold
Hot foods should have internal temperatures of 140F. Cold foods 40F or below


Food Safety Training Tips

Food safety begins with your staff. Implement some of the following tips in your operation's training program.
Make food safety part of the company culture
Relate food safety practices to everyday events
Use real life examples
Keep teaching when the class is over


HACCP

Hazard Analysis of Critical Control Points (HACCP), a food safety assurance evaluation group, has been setting standards for methods assuring that all foods produced and consumed are free of bacterial pathogens. HACCP follows the flow of food from receiving through service to ensure that food is handled safely throughout the foodservice operation. The HACCP system helps identify potential risks, recommends procedures to reduce the risk and documents that the procedures are followed. One of the best investments foodservice operators can make is to purchase the HACCPCode. Its check list helps to identify many of the hazards involved in food handling and preparation. HACCP guides are also available with detailed and specific temperature points for various kinds of equipment and foods as well as for the identification of certain bacteria growth ranges. With the use of the proper thermometer, the foodservice operator can test the degrees of salad bars, steam tables, grill surfaces, fryers, freezers and ovens. Thermometers also help to identify specific times for thawing, cooking and cooling foods as well as the handling of leftovers.  Other standards set by the HACCP include hygiene, food receiving and storage, packaging, preprocessing, service of foods, microbial (biological contaminants), chemical contaminants and physical contaminants. The successful implementation of any HACCP process can result in high-quality defect-free products prepared and maintained in a manner consistent with the different local, county, state and federal health organizations quality improvement philosophies.


Hotlines

Meat and Poultry Hotline
1-800-535-4555
Seafood Hotline
1-800-332-4010
National Restaurant Assoc. Food Safety Council
800-765-2122


How Often Do Errors Occur

Mistakes made at home are likely to be repeated at work. The following survey information from Audits International illustrates the need for ongoing employee training. 106 households in 81 cities were asked about their basic food safety practices.
Misuse of towels/sponges 92%
Thermometer not used 92%
Product past expiration date 89%
Eating/drinking/gum chewing 71% while cooking
Improper left over handling 63%
Refrigerated holding too warm 42%
Food stored uncovered 31%
Improper thawing 28%


Is Sanitation Training Really Necessary?

As food service professionals, or more specifically school food and nutrition professionals, we never want to read or hear: School District Found at Fault For E. Coli Outbreak; E. Coli Outbreak Hits Wisconsin School; E. Coli Outbreak Reported in Milwaukee School; Salmonella Outbreak Reported After Students Ate Watermelon and Pears; etc. Can headlines such as these be prevented?
The answer is a definite, YES!
It is our responsibility as managers, directors and supervisors to provide training in the area of food service and sanitation. The old statement, An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure, definitely is appropriate when one is considering the importance of training in the area of sanitation.
Maybe training is just not something you enjoy or feel comfortable doing. All you have to do is ask for help. Many equipment representatives are certified to teach Serve Safe, which was developed by the Educational Foundation of the National Restaurant Association and Serving It Safe, a sanitation course developed by USDA Food and Consumer Service is taught by many Child Nutrition Program Directors and Supervisors and by the Food Service Management Institute. Your local or State Department of Public Health and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System are also excellent resources. There are so many valuable resources, you do not have to do everything yourself.
Many valuable resources can also be found on the Internet. An activity book for students can be found at www.foodsafety.gov/~dms/cbook.html and www.fsis.usda.gov.
Ten hours of sanitation training is one of the requirements before anyone working in school foodservice can become a certified member of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA). If every child nutrition program employee, which would include directors, supervisors and managers, joined the ASFSA and became certified, many potential sanitation and food borne illness problems would be eliminated. For information about the ASFSA, call 1-800-877-8822 or visit the web site www.ASFSA.org. Developing a plan or strategy for your sanitation program is very important. A few ideas are: Post signs about handwashing and temperatures; and serve as an example by developing and practicing good sanitation habits.
I really believe that the question, Can we do something to prevent foodborne illness? is incorrect. The real question is, Can we afford NOT to do something? We all know the correct answer. It is our responsibility to prove to our customers (students, faculty, administrators, and visitors) and employees that we care about the safety of their food. We must provide excellent sanitation training and the tools and equipment to practice good sanitation. In other words, it is our responsibility to make certain that our Foodservice employees Practice What We Teach!


Key Operator Issues-Part 1: Food Safety

Technomic Inc., a leading foodservice industry research firm, did a recent study on key issues impacting Foodservice Operators. We will cover the 4 areas that Operators expressed as their top concerns: Food Safety, Labor, Growth and Cost Control. We will begin with Food Safety.
Preventive safety measures can save you money, head off potential problems and give your customers confidence that your establishment meets all standard of excellence. There are many things you can do to make your establishment and the food you serve safer. A good place to start is by establishing procedures and plans and communicate them to every employee.
Proper Procedures to Ensure Food Safety
Receiving
Check each product for temperature, quality and freshness as it arrives. Use all your senses to check for freshness-look, smell, feel and even taste the product. Make sure the item meets your purchase specifications. Randomly examine the entire contents of a box rather than just the items on the top.
As part of your receiving practices, check that refrigerated items arrive at proper temperatures, usually 41 degrees Fahrenheit or below. If a product does not meet your standards of freshness, refuse to accept it.
Holding
The delivery and catering of food offers opportunities for temperature abuse. To ensure food is safe while being cold-held, food must stay cool and out of the temperature danger zone (41F to 140F). Use covers and wrappers to retain food temperatures. Place cold food in chilled gel-filled containers or in bowls of ice if mechanical equipment is not available or practical.
If food is being delivered or catered, don't be afraid to ask the delivery person to show you the temperature of the food upon arrival. Items should be in rigid, insulated containers capable of maintaining food temperatures at 41F or lower to transport food
Preparation
The first step in food preparation often is thawing the food that will be served. If the food is thawed improperly, foodborne microorganisms can grow and make it unsafe. Thaw food in the refrigerator at temperatures of 41F or lower.
Submerge any frozen product in cold running water (70F or lower). Make sure the thawed product doesn't drip water onto other products or food-contact surfaces.
Food may be thawed in a microwave oven, only if it will be cooked immediately afterward; microwave thawing can actually start cooking the product, so don't use this method unless the food will be cooked immediately after thawing.
Food may be thawed as part of any cooking procedure, as long as the product reaches its recommended minimum internal cooking temperature. (i.e., frozen hamburger patties can go straight from the freezer onto the grill without being thawed first.)
Cooling
If cooked food will not be served immediately, or if you have leftovers, it must be cooled as quickly as possible to prevent it from becoming unsafe.
Reduce the size of the food being cooled. Divide hot food into smaller quantities, or put food into shallow pans.
Use ice-water baths to bring food temperatures down quickly. After dividing food into smaller quantities, put the pans in a clean sink or large pot filled with ice and water.
Storage
Immediately unpack and store items. Repackage items in uniform, see-through plastic containers that seal tightly to extend the product's life.
Mark each item with the date it was received. You can use magic markers, grease pencils, different color stamps or a date stamp-whatever works best for your operation.
How are Operators Addressing Food Safety?
ServSafe certification, more training
Embracing proper procedures
Designing their operations for food safety
More coolers, freezers
Better placement of equipment
Appropriate product flow
More hand sinks
Cook chill


Measures to prevent food-borne illness caused by E. coli bacteria

Wash your hands
Cook meats to minimum internal temperature of 155F
Cook meats until juices run clear and there is no pink color visible
Ensure that raw meats do not touch other foods that are already cooked or will be eaten raw
Use paper towels or clean cloth towels to dry hands and food contact surfaces, such as countertops. Towels should not be reused.


Measuring Product Temperatures

By heating food to the proper temperature all pathogens can be eliminated in preparation. Properly using the correct thermometer is crucial.
Never use color as an indication of the doneness of meat.
Always measure at the product's center from the thickest portion.
Never measure cooked product immediately after measuring raw product. Probes should be washed, rinsed and sanitized after each use.
The USDA Directive 7370.1 on meat temperatures requires the total of probe and instrument accuracy to be within 1F.


Minimum Safe Internal Cooking Temperatures




NSF Refrigerator/Freezer Regulation


NSF has revised the equipment standard for the construction and performance of commercial refrigerators and freezers. The revision of Standard 7 affects all buffet and preparation equipment. These types of units must maintain product temperature between 33F and 41F in an 86F ambient for a period of four hours. This new stricter standard will be duly enforced.


Part 1: What to Do Before an Inspector Visits

This is part one in a series on Health Inspector Visits. We will cover What to Do During the Inspection and What to Do After the Inspection in subsequent newsletters. Watch for more!
Without a health inspection, your restaurant could fall victim to a foodborne-illness outbreak that could ruin your establishment's reputation and even force you to close your doors.
The proper strategy for a successful health inspection is to be ready for an examination at any time. This means that you and your managers should become inspectors and conduct weekly, in-house examinations before health inspectors arrive.
When conducting a self-assessment, you should use the same form-or a similar form-that your health department uses and put yourself in the health inspector's place.
Your self-inspection should include walking into your establishment from the outside to get an outsider's impression.
After you inspect your operation, hold a 10-minute briefing with kitchen staff to review any problems. This step will help convey the importance of food safety to staff members.
If your staff includes employees for whom English is a second language, ask a bilingual employee to translate the findings to them so they also understand how important cleanliness is to the success of your restaurant.
Your self-inspection priorities for kitchen employees should include: food temperature, awareness of food types and hand washing.
Temperature guidelines include checking the temperature of products when they arrive, when they are stored and when they are served. Doing this will reduce foodborne-illness outbreaks by 70 percent.
Food-type guidelines are divided into three categories: beef and beef blood; chicken; and all other types of food. These three categories can never touch each other during preparation.
The importance of hand washing should be re-enforced by posting signs at all kitchen sinks and in employee restrooms.
Train your managers to ensure that they are up-to-date on the latest food-safety techniques. Restaurant employees can use the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation's ServSafe food-safety training program.
Review your local health code for any special, local requirements.
Another way to influence the outcome of your health inspection is to get involved politically. Join your state's health-code-revision committee to give a restaurateur's perspective. Involve senior staff on such committees as well.


Part 2: What to do During an Inspection

This is part two in a series on Health Inspector Visits. Last month we covered What to Do Before an Inspector Visits and next month we will conclude with What to Do After the Inspection. Watch for more!
Don't panic when an inspector arrives. Think of this as a learning opportunity that will benefit your operation by making it as safe as possible. To make an inspection as pain-free as possible, you should:
Ask to see the inspector's credentials first. In some cases, people have tried to pass themselves off as health officials. If you're unsure of the person's credentials, call the local health department or the inspector's supervisor for verification.
Do not refuse an inspection. The examiner will likely get an inspection warrant that you can't refuse and the examination will be even more thorough.
Tag along with the inspector and take notes of any violations he or she finds. This gives you the chance to correct simple problems on the spot and the examiner will note your willingness to fix problems.
Refrain from offering any food or any other item that can be misconstrued as an attempt to influence the inspector's findings. After the exam, be sure to sign the inspector's report. Signing it doesn't mean that you agree to the findings; it only means that you received a copy of the report.
Ask the inspector to explain his findings to your staff and offer suggestions on areas that need improvement. Even the cleanest restaurants sometimes contain health-code violations.


Part 3: What You Can Do if You Are Cited

This is part three in a series on Health Inspector Visits. In the last two months we have covered What to Do Before an Inspector Visits and What to do During an Inspection. Call us for more information on food safety or for recommendations of products that are designed to help keep your business running safely.
Here's what you can do to limit the damage of an adverse health inspection:
Fix small problems during the inspection to let the examiner know you are willing to work with him or her.
If you don't understand the violation, ask the health official to explain. Don't be confrontational.
If you disagree with the inspector's findings, keep quiet for the time being and appeal the decision later. Your health inspector should be your ally. He or she can improve the quality of your cuisine and save you from the devastation of a foodborne-illness incident.


Pocket Thermometers

It's a good idea to require managers to carry a test thermometer in their pockets. Not only will they have it readily available, it will also keep your local health department happy.


Proper Hand Washing

Hand washing is an important and simple defense against the spread of dangerous bacteria and foodborne illness. Use as hot a water temperature as you can stand; lather hands and wrists with soap for 20 seconds; rinse thoroughly with clean water; dry with single serve paper towel or air dryer.
Things to consider:
Do all employees have access to the facility?
Can a water temperature of 110 be attained?
Are the faucets controlled with a single knob for temperature adjustment?
Is liquid soap available?
Are paper towels or hand dryers available?
Does your training program include hand washing activities?
The following activities should always be followed by thorough handwashing:
Using the restroom
Using a handkerchief or tissue
Handling raw food, especially meat and poultry
Touching or scratching any area of the body
Touching unclean equipment or work surfaces
Smoking or using chewing tobacco
Clearing away or scraping used dishes and utensils
Eating food or drinking beverages
Although the use of plastic gloves provides additional sanitary protection, it is important to remember that gloves are just as susceptible to contamination as bare hands and should not be used to avoid handwashing.


Safeguards Against Slip Ups


Kitchen accidents such as slips and falls are often the result of an unsafe environment. Floor surfaces attract water, grease, dirt, and other objects making them hazardous. Besides cleaning and maintaining floors on a regular basis, floor matting can significantly reduce potential accidents.


Safe Temperatures for Cold Food

According to the FDA's 1997 Model Food Code, Refrigeration temperatures should be lower than 41F to ensure that food reaches 41F.


The Cost of Foodborne Illness

Why should foodservice operators protect customers from foodborne illness? Besides the obvious moral responsibility to public health, protecting customers protects your bottom line.
The cost of foodborne illness can be high. Here's what it may cost you:
Loss of Customers and Sales
Loss of Prestige and Reputation
Legal Suits Resulting in Lawyer and Court Fees
Increased Insurance Premiums
Lowered Employee Morale
Absenteeism of Employees
Cost for Retraining Employees
Embarrassment


The Importance of Safety Prevention

Safety is one of the most important issues for the foodservice operator. Standards must be set to ensure that employees, patrons, and your business reputation are protected. Preventive safety measures can help you head off potential problems and give your customers confidence that your establishment meets all standards for excellence. Preventive safety measures can save you money. Safer practices mean fewer workman's compensation claims. Preventive measures can also reduce payroll costs. If an employee is injured on the job, that person must be temporarily or permanently replaced which can be costly. Workers unfamiliar with certain tasks pose greater risk for injuries not to mention overtime costs. Concern for your employees' safety can also do great things for employee morale. Happier workers will result in increased productivity.


The Right Way to Prepare Fruits and Vegetables

Whether they're the main attraction or serving as decorative accents, fruits and vegetables add freshness, flavor and color to any meal being served. But produce requires special safety handling by employees for the simple reason it will often be served raw, never receiving the safety benefit of being cooked. There are a few safe handling tips to follow:
To keep product fresh, order it frequently and setup receiving guidelines.
Thoroughly wash fruits and vegetables with potable, running water, never in standing water as microorganisms that are rinsed off one item can then be spread to the next.
Avoid cross-contamination in storage.
Don't prep produce until it is to be used.
Storage Tips:
These items should be stored at 60F-65F:
Bananas, ginger root, honeydew, mangos, melons, dry onions, papayas, squash (hard shell), sweet potatoes, tomatoes.
These items should be stored at 45F-50F:
Unripe avocados, cucumbers, eggplant, grapefruit, green beans, guavas, basil, lemons, limes, okra, oranges, hot and sweet peppers, pineapple, squash (soft shell), tangerines, watermelon.
These items should be stored at 32F-36F:
Apples, apricots, artichokes, asparagus, ripe avocados, beets, blueberries, bok choy, broccoli, brussel sprouts, bunched greens, whole cabbage, cantaloupe, topped carrots, cauliflower, celery, cherries, Chinese pea pods, sweet corn, garlic, green peas, herbs, kiwi, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, Napa/Chinese cabbage, onions, parsley, parsnips, rutabagas, turnips, peaches, pears, persimmons, plums/prunes, pre-cut fruits and vegetables, radishes, raspberries, blackberries, salad mixes, spinach, sprouts, strawberries.


Thermometers

A good thermometer is one of the most useful tools for ensuring food safety. There is a wide variety of thermometers available for specific applications such as espresso, grills, refrigerators and probe thermometers. Educate your staff on the proper use and application for each thermometer. It's also important they know how to use and calibrate probe thermometers.


Things to Consider When Buying Floormats

Be sure to first measure the area the mats will be used in. Will you use the mat in a wet or dry area? Do you need anti-fatigue or grease proof styles? Ask us! We can help you determine which mats will meet your needs.


What is Microban and how does it affect food safety?

Recently, manufacturers have a released a variety of industrial and consumer products featuring Microban. Microban is a safe, durable and effective antibacterial protection that inhibits the growth of bacteria, mold and fungus that cause odor and stains. It is built into the products during manufacturing and provides continuous protection for the life of the product.
Used in medical applications for over 10 years, Microban is registered with the EPA. NSF has also approved it for use in food and splash zone areas and food processing equipment. While Microban is a helpful adjunct to good sanitation practices, it does not replace the need to clean and disinfect products. Maintaining regular sanitation practices should remain top priority.

Serving
  Approximate Food Holding Times for Heat Lamps and Enclosed Counter Warmers




Food Holding and Sanitation Temperature Guide



Merchandising Warmers

It has been said "we eat with our eyes" because the better food looks, the more people want it. Nothing keeps food looking and tasting delicious as a merchandising warmer. From buffet lines to pass-through areas, convenience stores to fast food restaurants to school cafeterias, a variety of holding and display equipment with options and signage for every foodservice operation is available. Use custom food decals and merchandising signs that are designed to attract attention and stimulate impulse sales. Create hot food merchandising systems by stacking display cabinets and holding cabinets to produce a display and storage system, or to provide two separate heat and humidity zones.


Popcorn Poppers

Popcorn poppers are used in a broad range of applications that include fast food, leisure, arena and stadium concessions and traditional restaurant operations, wherever people gather. The aroma of buttered popcorn attracts attention.


Recommended Settings for Drawer Warmers


Storage and Transport
  Cleaning Open Wire Shelving

Equipment Needed:

Sponges
Towels
Buckets
Hoses
Mild Detergent
Estimated Cleaning Time:
30 minutes once a month=6 hours per year
Labor Cost x 6 hours =cleaning cost per year
Cleaning Steps:
1. Remove all products.
2. Move shelving unit to outside area or area away from food products. (Note: do not contaminate food product with cleaning chemicals)
3. Hose shelving unit to loosen grease and dirt.
4. Use water, mild detergent and sponges to clean shelves.
5. Use brushes to clean between wires and remove stubborn residue.
6. Hose off unit again to remove cleaning chemicals and loose dirt.
7. Towel dry unit and move back to original location.
8. Place product back on shelf.
From Store Safe to Serve Safe the Easy Way . . .
A clean, well kept food storage area is very important. However, cleaning and maintenance of shelving can be a very time consuming process. Choosing the right shelving for your food storage area can eliminate a lot of headaches and grief. Shelving that can be cleaned quickly and easily will more likely be done more often and will not take too much time away from other job responsibilities.


Cleaning Removable Polymer Shelving

Equipment Needed:
Dish machine or pot sink
Estimated Cleaning Time:
10 minutes once a month=2 hours per year
Labor Cost x 2 hours =cleaning cost per year
Cleaning Steps:
1. Shift products on one end of shelf.
2. Remove polymer mats.
3. Place in dish machine or sink to clean.
4. Replace mats and repeat for other side of unit.
From Store Safe to Serve Safe the Easy Way . . .
A clean, well kept food storage area is very important. However, cleaning and maintenance of shelving can be a very time consuming process. Choosing the right shelving for your food storage area can eliminate a lot of headaches and grief. Shelving that can be cleaned quickly and easily will more likely be done more often and will not take too much time away from other job responsibilities.


Employee Injuries

Employee injury claims cost employers millions each year. Back and spine strain are among the top reported injuries. Urge employees to transport heavy and awkward loads with carts designed for the task. This will help reduce workplace injuries and make your employees happier.


Food Preparation and Storage Equipment

The equipment in your kitchen should meet industry and regulatory standards. The following are some standard NSF requirements for food prep and storage equipment.
Food contact and food-splash surfaces must be easy to reach, easy to clean, nontoxic, nonabsorbent, corrosion resistant, non-reactive to food or cleaning and should not leave a color, odor or taste to food.
Should be rounded with tightly sealed edges and corners
Should be designed with solid and liquid waste traps that are easy to remove.
Consider replacing items if:
They're worn out
They no longer meet local health codes
They are no longer time or cost effective
They make it more difficult to adhere to your operation's HACCP plan


Meal Delivery . . .A Hot Issue


Delivering a hot, tasty meal to multiple locations in a short period of time can be a challenge without the proper staff and equipment. Many different types of cook-serve products are available and cost can be very substantial. It is important to do your homework on the pros and cons of each system. Working with a professional planner to design the proper system for your application can be well worth the investment and prevent costly mistakes. A production line set up or Central Tray Make-Up Line is one of the most efficient ways to handle assembly and delivery of meals. When designing a Central Tray Make-Up Line you should consider the type of meals you will be preparing, number of tray set ups needed, and time available for meal preparation and delivery. This will help to determine what kind of staff and equipment you will need. An efficient set up is required to ensure proper holding temperature as food can lose from 10 to 20 just in the plating process. Most cook-serve systems include some type of heated base (sometimes called pellet), plate, dome cover, underliner, and tray as well as ancillary cups, mugs, bowls, and lids. Additional equipment items needed to set up a Central Tray Make-Up Line include base heaters, delivery carts, drying and transport carts, starter stations, tray conveyor systems, self-leveling dish and tray dispensers, plus hot and cold food counters. One of the biggest differences between systems is the type of base you select. Bases are available in high heat plastic materials or stainless steel wax core units. Temperature retention time varies between bases so it is important to test whatever systems you are considering in your own kitchen environment before making your final decision. Heating methods vary by base, and choices include both convected and induction heating. By working with your planner, you can determine which type will best suit your application.


Recommended Storage for Refrigerated and Frozen Foods




Sensitive Items

Be sure to keep these ethylene
sensitive items...,
Brussels spouts
Carrots
Eggplant
Fresh herbs
Kiwi fruit (unripe)
Leafy greens
Lettuce
Peppers
Spinach
Sweet potatoes
...Away from these ethylene
producing items
Apples
Apricots
Avocados
Bananas
Cantaloupe
Citrus fruits
Figs
Honeydew
Mangoes
Nectarines
Papayas
Pears
Persimmons
Plantains
Prunes
Tomatoes
Watermelon


Shelving and Electric Concerns

If you intend to have electrical equipment on or under the shelves, such as heat lamps, the wiring may be run inside the support tubing.
It is extremely important to make certain that there is ample support in a wall before ordering any wall hung unit.


Things to Consider When Buying Carts

What will you be using the cart for?
What size are the objects that will be placed on the cart?
How much of the cart area will the objects cover?
How much weight will be put on the cart?
How many shelves are required?
What type of casters do you need (ie. locking, braking, oversized)?
Should you buy metal or plastic?


Things to Consider When Buying Shelving

What will you be storing on the shelves? Shelving intended for refrigerated storage should meet different requirements than shelving for dry storage. Always give careful consideration to the weight of items you intend to place on shelving. Are you storing items on shelves that would be easier and safer to store on dunnage racks? Ask us! We'd be happy to help you determine what will best suit your needs.


Things to Consider When Choosing a Rack or Cabinet

What is to be stored?
What size can you use? Height, width and depth of kitchen space is important. You should also consider maneuvering area (ie. corners, elevators, etc.)
What capacity is needed? The most popular 63" high model holds 20 of the 18"x26" sheet pans per rack. But, a variety of configurations and sizes are available.
What kind of spacing is needed? To maintain the integrity of your product, spacing between ledges is critical. For example, a meringue pie would not require the same amount of space as a donut.
Do you need to load from the front or the side?
What type of construction do you want? Aluminum or stainless? Ask us for help! We are happy to help you determine what rack or cabinet will fulfill your needs.

Tabletop
  Backup Supply of Glasses

Have an adequate backup supply of glasses for rush periods. To avoid thermal shock, never place recently washed glasses into service. Let glasses stand long enough to reach room temperature.


Baskets

In some locations, health inspectors insist that foodservice outlets must use synthetic or poly baskets in place of natural, manmade baskets. Ask us for alternatives.



China Breakage Troubleshooting Tips

If you notice many rim chips on your china:
Do not stack cups on one another
Check for improper washing racks
Line your soak sink
Watch for overlapped plates in rack or on belt in dish machine
Be careful about mixing heavyweight and lightweight bodied china in dishroom
Look for improper bus tub loading
If you notice a lot of surface wear:
Minimize use of metal sponges
If you notice too much breakage:
Avoid placing in soaking tubs roughly
Always hold item using handle
Check for improper rack height
Use compartment racks
Use trays to carry plates to the table (not by hand or on arm)
Watch overstacking self-levelers




Choosing Glassware

The sizes, shapes and styles of glass you choose will affect your entire presentation of beverages. Consider what type of drink you will be serving most and find a type of glass to complement. Ask yourself Will a lot of ice be used? Will the drink be garnished? Will liquor be served that needs to be portion controlled?
Determine the amount of ounces your drink will be per portion based on price and profit. Ask us to show you how those ounces will look presented in a variety of glassware.




Dinnerware Care


Never use metal sponges on china. White plastic sponges are made for ceramic and glass dinnerware. Unload dinnerware one piece at a time from the dish machine. This avoids chipping and rims clicking together. A quiet dishroom is evidence of longer dinnerware and glassware life. Keep an adequate supply of dinnerware in stock. Proper rotation and careful handling will extend the service life of your dinnerware and keep replacement costs down.
Avoid thermal shock conditions, such as taking dinnerware from the freezer to oven to a cold surface. Also, do not heat dinnerware over an open flame. All of these actions can cause cracking.




Dinnerware Durability

Typically, the higher the weight of the dinnerware, the more durable it will be. But, consideration should also be given to your waitstaff.
How much can be carried on one tray? How far will the trays be carried?
Find a weight that provides the look you want and is comfortable for your employees.


Dinnerware Glaze

When selecting dinnerware, watch for the smoothness of glaze applications, and ask for details on reinforced designs or reinforced materials.


Dressing a Table




Flatware

Flatware is the leading item purchased by operators industry-wide. Why? Because so much flatware goes into the trash. Decrease your loss by using trash containers featuring magnetic bars that attract flatware.


Ground Pepper

For better flavor, always use freshly ground pepper. The flavor comes from the oils of the sliced peppercorns.


Stainless Products

Stainless means a product will stain less, not that it is stain proof.


Steak Knives

Look for a sturdy blade with well defined serations. The serations protect the actual cutting edge and will never need sharpening. Rounded end steak knives cut just as efficiently as pointed ones, yet lessen the possibility of accidents. Laminate handled knives are more durable and hold up to frequent dishwashing. A less expensive option is a phenolic plastic handle.



Traditional sizes and plate names

Charger-13-1/2"
Service Plate-12"
Dinner Plate-10"
Luncheon Plate-9"
Salad Plate-8"
Dessert Plate-7"
Bread & Butter-6"


Types of Dinnerware

Earthenware:
Made of clay fired at low temperatures making it fairly fragile and quite heavy.
Stoneware:
Made from fortified clay that is fired at high temperatures, rendering it very hard and sturdy. It is opaque, vitrified (fused like glass), and nonporous, and is generally oven and dishwasher safe.
Porcelain:
Composed of kaolin, or china clay, and pentuntse, or china stone, making it fine grained and strong. It is fired at very high temperatures and is vitrified and nonporous.
Bone China:
Porcelain to which bone ash has been added, giving it greater whiteness and translucency.
Fired at high temperatures, bone china is thin, lightweight and durable.


Using Glass to Accentuate

Consider using glassware to accentuate. It can add a special touch that says elegance.
Use glass plates alone or with a charger plate for an entirely different look.
Salads appear crisper and look lighter when served in glass.


Textile
  Napkin Folding



Poly Cotton


Use poly cotton for good color and easy care:
less shrinkage, wrinkling and fading.


Table Linens

Table coverings add the finishing touch and create the background to bring all the elements together. They are an affordable way to change your restaurant's decor and provide a pleasant, comfortable dining experience. When choosing the linen color just right for your establishment, you should consider the overall decor such as wallpaper and drapery print. Also consider the type of food that will be served. White linen will contrast ivory china and exaggerate its dark, rich tones. A cool color table will enhance the whiteness of most china bodies. Spills and stains on linens can take away from the overall food presentation. Using a vinyl or laminated table topper in combination with your table linens offers added protection from stains. Insert your menus, house specials, photos of food, or artwork under the laminate for a trendy new look that's easy to change!


Table Padding

Table padding helps to not only muffle noises but also helps prevent chips and breakage of tableware.
Utensil
  Brush Care

Throw away worn brushes. They cannot do the job and can be a boarding house for bacteria.
Hang your brushes when not in use. Avoid storing brushes under sinks, behind pipes or in a drawer.


Color Coding Utensils





How to Use a Sharpening Steel





Kitchen Brushes: An explanation of types

Polyester: A superior synthetic fill that offers long life and great durability because it is immune to most common chemicals. It can also be used near moderately high temperatures and provides excellent resistance to abrasion.
Tynex Nylon: An upgrade from Polyester bristles. Tynex offers better memory and will hold up longer than Polyester.
Nylon: Great durability and bend recovery. Works well with most chemicals. Has long life because of its abrasive resistance.
Boar: An animal fiber that is relatively scarce and very expensive. Each strand of bristle has a natural taper from the flesh end to the tip. The tip end of each bristle is naturally split into two or more branches making it ideal for pastry/basting brushes. It has excellent durability and water resistance. Sterilized.


Knife Handling

A dull knife is a dangerous knife.
One should always use a sharpening steel to keep an edge on knives.
If a knife starts to fall, watch your feet and step aside; but let it fall.
Keep your mind on your work when holding a knife.
Never put a knife in water or under vegetables where it cannot be seen; serious cuts can occur as a result.
Cut away from the body.
Do not palm vegetables or fruit and then attempt to cut.
Do not use knives as can or jar openers.
The best edge will quickly dull if it strikes metal, glass or formica.
Blades should never be heated in a flame or an oven. Elevated temperatures will destroy the temper of the steel.
Fine knives should be carefully stored in their own rack or in a partitioned drawer.


Steak Knives

Look for a sturdy blade with well defined serations. The serations protect the actual cutting edge and will never need sharpening. Rounded end steak knives cut just as efficiently as pointed ones, yet lessen the possibility of accidents. Laminate handled knives are more durable and hold up to frequent dishwashing. A less expensive option is a phenolic plastic handle.



The Proper Knife for each Cutting Job


Cutting is quicker and easier when you use the correct knife for the job. Here are suggestions to help you choose the proper type of knife for each cutting job.
1. The Chef's Knife (Also known as Cook's Knife or French Knife) Used for all kinds of heavy-duty cutting, as well as chopping, dicing and shredding. The ultimate in cutlery for the gourmet cook.
2. The Slicer - Ideal for ham and large cuts of meat. Slices roasted meats, chicken and turkey.
3. The Bread Knife - Slices breads, delicate fruits and vegetables. Cuts through hard crust for uniform slicing.
4. The Fork - The perfect complement to any carving or slicing knife. Provides a more secure hold, especially on the tail end of a joint of meat.
5. The Steel - Realigns the knife edge. Should be used frequently to maintain sharpness.
6. The Utility Knife - Excellent for food preparation or almost any kitchen chore from cutting vegetables and meats to halving sandwiches.
7. The Steak Knife - For individual table use. Cuts meat without tearing.
8. The Parer - The knife used most frequently. Cuts, peels and dices fruits, vegetables, cheeses and meats.


Types of Knife Edges

Tapered-thick on the top tapering thin to the edge.
Duo-edge-hollowed out grooves on side of knife blade which act as a cutting agent for fat.
Scalloped-U shape edge on blade to act as a cutting edge.


What Makes a Good Knife

Sharpness: Most important is how well its blade will take and hold an edge.
Durability: A good knife will stand up to generations of daily use without undue wear or deterioration. Especially important is a moisture proof handle.
Hygiene: Although cutlery steel is naturally sanitary, materials and construction details of the handle should minimize crevices that offer hospitality to bacteria.

Warewashing
  Clean First Impressions

Meeting Health Department and HACCP regulations, improving aesthetics, and preventing slip and fall accidents are all good reasons for cleaning. Foodservice managers implement formal cleaning procedures to make that all-important first impression on patrons. Facilities that look, smell, and feel clean present an inviting image that can carry over to the positive dining experience.
By making cleaning tasks easier to perform, workers are motivated to clean more thoroughly and more often. Begin to evaluate every piece of cleaning equipment for its value in helping to improve productivity, promote worker safety, and protect your facility's professional image.
Improving productivity starts with analyzing the area to be cleaned. Is it a long unobstructed hallway, restroom, or a congested space such as a kitchen? Consider the cleaning equipment needed for the task and ensure that workers know which equipment to use. A color-coded mopping system is an important part of eliminating cross contamination from rest- rooms being transferred into the food preparation area. Workers can quickly identify color-matched buckets, wringers, and mops designated for kitchen or restroom.
Features such as the foot-activated emptying mechanism on the EZMT's Mop Bucket can drain a bucket directly over a floor drain, eliminating back strain caused by lifting filled buckets into drainage sinks and reducing worker contact with the contaminated cleaning liquids.
The wringer must accommodate a wide range of mop styles and sizes. Mops come in various weights (ounces) or generic sizes. Mop construction is often dictated by the cleaning application, and the user's ability to launder mops, thus prolonging mop life. Blended yarns, loop ends and tailbanding greatly enhance mop performance and life expectancy. The key is matching the cleaning application to the right mop for task. A Flat Mop, for example, can clean more square feet per hour than conventional string wet mops, a 30% improved productivity rate. It, too, has a foot-operated release for time and labor savings and quickly cleans large, unobstructed areas. A qualified sales rep can help explain, demonstrate and recommend cost effective mop alternatives and mopping techniques.
Worker productivity is affected by cleaning ergonomics. Studies have shown that tasks associated with cleaning can be leading contributors to worker safety, health and morale issues.
Improper posture causes workers to tire and ache, miss time, work slower, and perform poorly. Ergonomically designed equipment suited to both the tasks and worker stature greatly improves this area. High-sided mop bucket/wringer systems require workers to lift heavy water-laden mops several extra inches for wringing. This repetitive lifting can result in fatigue and back strain, particularly for small stature workers. The mop handle also plays an important role. Handles designed to minimize force and leverage, like the Swivel Grip Mop Handle, can make the difference between comfort and injury. Take time to examine and understand the features of ergonomically designed products and test manufacturer's claims for accuracy.
Your professional image includes every point of exposure. A vacationing family stopping for lunch often utilizes the restroom before taking a table. Offensive odors and overflowing wastebaskets can impact their dining decision. Installing an automatic odor control system can dispel odors and negative impressions. A programmable, metered spray unit formulated with organic oil extracts, such as the SeBreeze System, can effectively treat up to several thousand cubic feet without your assistance.
Labor issues in the foodservice industry will remain a vital concern as cleaning regulations become more demanding. The foodservice operator must meet those demands while taking measures to control costs and grow business. It's you that must choose products that legitimately improve productivity, promote safety, and protect your professional image. And in the end, it's patrons who will be loyal to facilities that look, smell, and feel fresh and clean.


Consider the gauge of metal for your sink


If you expect heavy usage or institutional use, consider purchasing 14 gauge stainless. If your usage is more typical, 16 gauge will suit your needs. If budget is a consideration (and your honest evaluation is a non-institutional load), 18 gauge might suit you but check on sink depth, weights and potential bracing.


Dishwashing

CAUTION! If you are using a low temp or chlorine bath type dishwashing system, take great care in following the manufacturer's instructions. An over-concentration of sodium hypochlorite (bleach), the active sanitizing agent of these systems, will attack most metal tableware. Improper use or faulty equipment functioning will cause staining or corrosion of even the finest stainless steel. It is very important that you use only a plastic or stainless steel pan for pre-soaking. NEVER USE AN ALUMINUM PAN for pre-soaking. Aluminum frees the chlorine present in most pre-soak compounds and causes the discoloration of stainless steel.


Food Waste

The food waste that's processed by a disposer is100% biodegradable. Using a disposer helps ease the strain on our country's landfills.


Things to Consider When Buying Sinks

Will the sinks need to be NSF approved? Significant NSF requirements for sinks:
1. Drainboards, when provided, must have a splash guard and must be welded to the sink.
2. Sinks are considered a food zone. Therefore, only 300 series, 200 series and type 430 stainless steel are the approved materials. (Type 400 & 409 stainless steel are not acceptable.)

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