‘Operators are looking for inventive ways to get more production out of less space’

FEM has recently strengthened its portfolio with the introduction of Alto Shaam’s Vector multi-cook oven. We caught up with commercial director Mark Hogan for a quick chat on cooking technology and trends.

What are the main trends that you have seen in the prime cooking market over the past 12 months?

Energy efficiency remains a key trend, with caterers looking for kitchen equipment that can continue to provide savings over its lifetime. With the increased demand for faster food, caterers are looking for ovens that enable a variety of menu items to be produced efficiently and all at the same time. Open theatre style kitchens remain popular. This means caterers are sourcing equipment that is not only reliable and long-lasting, but looks good too. 

How do you see kitchens changing when it comes to the way that prime cooking equipment is deployed and used?

The gas versus electric debate is becoming more important and influences the way in which prime cooking equipment is being used. For example, electric induction hobs, which are versatile and energy efficient, are starting to replace gas burners. Also equipment that doesn’t require special extraction systems and can be located almost anywhere is proving to be popular.

What are the biggest priorities for operators when it comes to selecting prime cooking equipment?

As the size of kitchens continues to get squeezed, operators are looking for inventive ways to get more production out of less space. FEM has launched a radical solution in the shape of the Vector multi-cook oven, manufactured by Alto Shaam, which offers up to four separate oven chambers in one compact unit. It’s quick, too, with a special new Structured Air Technology that delivers faster, more even cooking, while its ventless operation, and the fact that it needs no water connection, means it can be placed anywhere.

How does the airflow technology actually work?

It delivers a high velocity, vertical airflow from the bottom and top of each chamber. It produces completely even temperature control, throughout each chamber, and faster cooking results — with no need to rotate or monitor cooking pans. The vertical airflow has the added benefit that when the door is opened, very little heat escapes.

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