In a commercial kitchen or food retail setting, the refrigerator is the heart of operations. Properly organising and optimising the layout of your commercial refrigerator can not only enhance efficiency but also reduce food waste, improve food safety, and save you money on energy costs.
Below, All So Cool have 8 tips to help you make the most out of your commercial refrigerator space.
- Categorise and Group Items
Start by categorising food items. Group similar products together; for instance, dairy products, vegetables, meats, and condiments should each have their designated section. This grouping makes it easier for your staff to find items quickly, reducing the amount of time the refrigerator doors are open, and therefore, conserving energy.
- FIFO (First In, First Out)
Implement a “First In, First Out” system for your perishable items. Place older products in front, so they are used before newer ones. This practice ensures that items are used before they expire, reducing food waste and saving you money.
- Use Clear Storage Containers
Invest in clear storage containers and labels for items in your commercial refrigerator. This makes it easier for your staff to see what’s inside without having to open containers or move things around, again reducing the time the refrigerator doors are open. It also helps prevent cross-contamination since items are less likely to be touched.
- Keep High-Demand Items at Eye Level
The items you access most frequently should be at eye level, ideally between waist and shoulder height. This reduces the need for bending or stretching, which can save time and prevent accidents. Low-demand items can be stored on higher or lower shelves.
- Check Door Seals
Regularly inspect and clean the door seals (gaskets) of your commercial refrigerator. Damaged or dirty seals can lead to temperature fluctuations and increased energy consumption. Replace any seals that are not functioning correctly.
- Don’t Overcrowd
It might be tempting to fill every inch of your commercial refrigerator to maximise storage space, but overcrowding can hinder air circulation and cause uneven cooling. This can lead to food spoilage and increased energy usage. Leave enough space between items for proper airflow.
- Monitor Inventory
Keep a close eye on your inventory to avoid overstocking. Excess inventory can lead to overcrowding, which, as mentioned above, can reduce efficiency. Regularly review your inventory and adjust orders accordingly.
- Regularly Defrost
If you have a commercial freezer, be sure to regularly defrost it. Ice buildup can reduce the freezer’s efficiency and storage capacity. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for defrosting.
By implementing these tips and practices, you can optimise your commercial refrigerator’s layout for maximum efficiency. Not only will this help reduce operating costs and food waste, but it will also create a safer and more organised work environment for your staff.
A well-organised refrigerator is not just a storage space; it’s a critical component of your business’s success.
If you notice any issues with the efficiency of your commercial refrigerator, All So Cool can assist with any preventative maintenance and repair of refrigeration equipment. Our qualified technicians carry on board a variety of common parts that will get your equipment operating in the shortest period of time possible.
Also having your refrigeration plant serviced by All So Cool at regular intervals will prevent the chance of a system breakdown.
Chat to All So Cool fridge mechanics Brisbane and Gold Coast on (07) 3422 0011 to discuss how we can help keep your business running cool. We are available 24/7.