10 Resilience-building Foodservice Lessons from ‘20 ̵ ‘21

So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, goodbye 2021. Don’t let the door hit you in the ***!

Over the past two years, change coming from every direction was enough to throw even the most well-oiled foodservice operation off their game.

Thanks a lot, 2020 and 2021; but 2020’s, we’re onto you now! 

All that change was hard to digest in such a short time, but what if we try to look at it as the gift of resilience, a crash course in adapting to frequent, sudden change?

Since the “surprises” don’t seem to be ending any time soon, we're wrapping up the year with 10 resilience-building takeaways from the first two years of this unparalleled decade. We’ve also added a few examples of strategies to address them.

1. Find ways to do more in less time with less effort.

Although this not a new concept, the need for it has become more critical than ever before.

Simplify cleaning. 
Instead of using multiple products to clean, sanitize, and disinfect, streamline the process with a product made specifically to do all three like Nu-Foamicide by Glissen Chemical. To learn more, click here.

Use a food processor.
Sammic CA-31 / CA-3V Vegetable Preparation Machine models make quick, comfortable work of cutting and chopping, performing each cutting operation in a single movement. 

Pre-prep and hold. Batch hold pre-prepped food products to speed service during busiest times. 

The Merco Visual Holding Cabinet maintains temperature, food quality and safety with an optimal holding environment for a wide range of foods from juicy to crispy.

For more time-saving ideas, see Get More Done with the Team You Have and Short Cuts for Short-staffed Foodservice Operations.

2. Establish or streamline to-go operations.

Options are available for virtually any budget to support safe holding for orders awaiting pickup.

Non-electric Holding: Use the Cambro Flex Station for back-of-house organization or staging takeout orders in disposable packaging or insulated carriers. To learn more, click here.

Heated Shelves:
 Heated shelving units provide an organized, clean, and dedicated place where temperature-controlled, finished orders can be held and retrieved. To learn more about heated shelving options available from Food Warming Equipment (FWE), click here.

Locker Systems: Secure holding in these timed heated or ambient cubbies enables customers and delivery drivers to access their designated locker, retrieve their order, and exit with minimal waiting and no staff interaction. To learn more about the Hatco Flav-R 2-Go no-contact locker system, click here.

For more ideas, see Equipment for Safe and Efficient To-go Operations, Winning Takeout Strategies, and Next Level Takeout

3. Create a food storage system that maximizes shelf life.

Protect food from air, moisture, and contaminants that shorten shelf life by storing it in sealed containers. Cambro food pans topped with a matching seal cover have been proven to extend product and protein shelf life up to 3 days. 

To learn more, click here.

4. Control portions to protect margins and manage inventory.

Weigh portions to control costs and maintain consistency. Edlund portion scales are made specifically for foodservice with features like the ClearShield™ cover to protect them from damaging grease, dust, and juices. 

To learn more, click here.

5. Provide outdoor dining options if possible.

Weather-proof equipment: A combination of Cambro service carts, portable CamBars, Camracks and insulated transport equipment can be set up virtually anywhere to create bussing, service, and bar service stations that are closer to guests.

Outdoor-friendly serving pieces:
Shatterproof melamine serving options from TableCraft enable safe and stylish outdoor dining.

To learn more about creating functional outdoor dining spaces, click here.

6. Re-purpose under-utilized space to support operational changes.

Utilize under-counter space:
Elements Series Undercounter Shelving Units by Cambro create usable storage space under most standard height counters and tables, ideal for keeping condiment packets, napkins, utensils, and other to-go or delivery items easy to access.

Cook outside the kitchen:
Ventless cooking equipment enables cooking in non-traditional areas, allowing you to enlarge your kitchen without construction or complicated installation.

To learn more about the many options now available for ventless cooking, and even warewashing, click here.

7.  Use tools and equipment that require less training.

Containers with built-in recipes: Did you know you can personalize a variety of Cambro containers, measuring cups, and Camliter carafes with fill lines for the ingredients of your proprietary recipes? Employees simply follow directions marked on the container to achieve consistent results.

High Speed Cooking: Merrychef eikon® ovens enable every employee to quickly serve a consistent, quality product with the push of a button. Pre-programmed menus and a combination of convection, microwave, and tuned air impingement cook 10-20x faster than a conventional oven, depending upon the model. See how the eikon e1s works here.

For more ideas to fast-track staff training, click here.

8. Utilize technology to add profitable menu items without adding staff.

Blended drinks:
Fresh Blends by Multiplex delivers fresh, delicious, made to order cold beverages through a user-friendly system that’s easy to install and easy to maintain. 

Specialty coffee drinks:
Crem Unity is a fully automatic coffee machine that creates barista-quality drinks at the push of a button. To see how Crem works, click here.

To learn more, see The Low-labor Secret to Juicing Up Revenue with Blended Drinks and Cashing in on Consumers' Love of Coffee.

9. Take advantage of local sources for food, equipment, and supplies.

Farm to table:
Buying local foods provides greater freshness and flavor and supports seasonal and regional specialty menu items. To learn more about protecting your locally-sourced fresh food investment, click here.

Work with your local E&S dealer: Odds are good that your local dealer has stock of top-selling items so you can get them when you need them rather than wait who-knows-how-long for them to arrive. 

To learn about other advantages of working with your local equipment and supply dealer, click here.

10. Explore any available tax breaks.

Section 179 allows your business to write off the entire purchase price of qualifying equipment for the current tax year (up to $1,050,000 for the 2021 tax year). Learn more about the Section 179 Tax Deduction here.

The speed of change in the early 20’s has been unprecedented, but we’re more ready than ever to help you successfully manage the unexpected. Contact us.




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