used cooking oil handling hotel kitchens

Used Cooking Oil Management in Hotel Kitchens

The hotel kitchen space

A hotel kitchen is unique. There are often a number of different types of restaurants all run out of one facility. Rules of thumb include 5 feet of kitchen space for each restaurant seat. But hotels often have room service, banquets, special events, and three different meals which have to be accounted for in terms of the kitchen space. With all this to think about, used cooking oil automation is rarely a consideration in the design of a hotel kitchen, but for both safety and savings, it should be!

Traffic and organization of food and used cooking oil in hotels 

Food has to be transported from the hotel kitchen to different areas such as banquet rooms, guest rooms, pool etc so you have to account for access to corridors, hallways and have the tools to transfer this food efficiently. One of the most important considerations is traffic flow and ergonomics. Should the kitchen be organized into zones based on what part of the hotel is being served or organized into prep stations depending on the food being served? 

Designing pathways where people and food transfer carts can easily pass each other is critical. Before designing a kitchen always involve chefs, waitstaff, kitchen workers in the design.

You’ll also need to think about where your hotel’s used cooking oil will be stored, and how your staff will transport it there.

The importance of flexibility

Prioritizing flexibility may sound like an obvious and silly maxim but it is important. If you are handling  buffets, room service, a restaurant and a convention room it is extremely important to build in flexibility.  The workflows for these services can be very different and giving your staff the ability to easily set up and take down workstations, preptables, shelves and heating elements is a very important consideration.

Consider storage options

Kitchens require an immense amount of storage, some refrigerated or frozen and storage at any temperature. Storage has to be thought through carefully. Frequency of access, temperature, pathway, quickness of retrieval all should be factored in. You wouldn’t want your broom closet taking up space that could have been seats in your restaurant. And both food and used cooking oil storage has to be designed with maximum flexibility for access by food prep workers and chefs. 

Kitchen design options

In any event, you have to create a functional and flexible space with different work zones. There are four basic configurations of restaurant kitchens and all of them work in the right situation: an assembly line, ergonomic kitchen, island-style, and zone-style configuration. They all have their pros and cons, so weigh them carefully.

Safety and efficiency in handling used cooking oil in hotels

Safety is a major consideration in the increasingly complicated design of hotel kitchens. But few designers think of the handling of used cooking oil and restaurant grease as a key component of hotel kitchen design. But think of the risk of a kitchen employee carrying or pushing a cart of cooking oil the length of a hotel kitchen, down the steps and out to a parking lot or garage to place the used cooking oil in a storage bin. 

Restaurants spend $12B per year on slips, burns, falls and accidents, most of which are associated with used cooking oil. Automating the process of handling used cooking oil will make a huge difference in the safe functioning of your hotel kitchen. D&W Alternative Energy customizes and automates used cooking oil handling for hotel kitchens: the containers, the transfers, the pumping, the pickup and the grease traps. for hotel kitchens. D&W will design a configuration that is ergonomic, safe and fits your kitchen. Whether you’re starting to design your kitchen or need us to outfit an existing kitchen our technology and experience will make a huge difference to the operation of your kitchen. Your employees may never need to touch used cooking oil again.

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