For the last few years, the entire foodservice industry has been reeling from one unshakable problem: staffing shortages. The pandemic spurred a mass exodus from the industry, and it still hasn't reached its pre-pandemic levels.

Fortunately, automation and other efficiencies are here to fill in the gaps. With the right equipment and procedures, operators can be more productive and profitable, reducing the need for labor in some cases while making those tasks more attractive in others. The future of labor efficiency in commercial kitchens is here, and it is exciting.

Understanding Labor Efficiency in Foodservice

Not only do operators have to contend with fewer workers in the kitchen, but they also have to hire inexperienced foodservice staff to fill critical positions. In the past, a lack of training could lead to excess food waste or dissatisfied customers. However, modern equipment automation helps take much of the guesswork out of food preparation and cooking.

For example, combination ovens come with preset options, meaning a worker can again push a few buttons and have a meal cooked to perfection. Not only do these machines mitigate a lack of experience in the kitchen, but they can also lead to overall labor savings.

With proper planning and equipment, a kitchen can often achieve high-efficiency output without needing skilled or highly trained staff. This alleviates the immediate concerns of labor shortages while allowing workers to practice their techniques without as much pressure.

Enhancing Efficiency Through Innovative Cooking Solutions From Unox

unix logoModern foodservice suppliers like Unox are facing operators' challenges with bold and innovative solutions. Unox offers a wide range of high-speed combination ovens that can increase output while maintaining consistency and customer satisfaction.

One revolutionary item in the Unox lineup is the Evereo hot fridge. The name says it all: this is a refrigerator but for hot food. This device keeps dishes warm for days without overcooking or drying them out. This flexibility means less food waste and better efficiency because fewer items must be reheated or re-cooked for service.

Another innovation is the self-cleaning high-speed oven. By handling day-to-day cleaning (workers must still perform deep cleans regularly), the oven stays pristine and eliminates one more task for kitchen staff.

Revolutionizing Food Preservation and Rapid Chilling with Irinox

irinox logoWhile companies like Unox focus on cooking and hot food preservation, Irinox focuses on the opposite side of the commercial kitchen: refrigeration. Blast chillers and shock freezers help preserve foods while reducing food waste. With faster chilling processes, blast chillers and shock freezers help increase productivity by allowing staff to prep food in advance and also help keep food out of the danger zone automatically.

The Irinox Multifresh is another labor-saving unit. While many know the Multifresh as simply a blast chiller, it also has the ability to thaw and proof, as well. Making it even more versatile, the unit can also provide low-temperature cooking and blast chilling, all in the same footprint.

Chefs who have tried Irinox equipment understand how well these chillers and freezers preserve food freshness. Providing more flexibility in the kitchen, Irinox allows staff to utilize fresh ingredients for longer, allowing chefs to flex their creativity and deliver a superior dining experience.

Optimizing Packaging and Storage Efficiency Using Henkelman

Henkelman-logoFood storage is a common issue for foodservice establishments, including grocery stores and delis. Because prolonged exposure to the air can yield bacteria and mold, operators must find ways to preserve freshness while making food accessible.

Henkelman vacuum-sealing equipment works with all foods, including fresh ingredients like fish, cheese, or vegetables. Vacuum sealing allows a clear view of what's inside and eliminates contact with the air, allowing food to be fresher and longer. Which, in turn, reduces waste and contributes to better profitability. 

Henkelman's Greenvac pans allow prepped produce or raw, uncooked proteins to be stored in walk-in coolers for weeks, helping maximize labor prep more than traditional processes. Labor shortages in a foodservice business can be mitigated with the right equipment and preparation. With options from these brands, operators will have no problem increasing efficiency while reducing costs. 

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