From display cooking to kiosks to kitchen functionality to automation, the 2019 NAFEM show was an exciting showcase of foodservice innovation. Here are some of our favorite equipment solutions. What were yours?
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What’s new in food?
So here we are at NAFEM 2019, the equipment show where we’re going to look to see automation, we’re going to look to see what’s happening with smaller kitchens, we’re going to look to see what’s happening with technology. This should be an exciting couple days. I can’t wait to see what the equipment industry is bringing to the food service industry.
Carts and kiosks are huge right now. They have applications everywhere, from commercial restaurants to college university and even K12. Some of my favorites here in the show include this booth by Gallery. I’ll take a look at those now. Cool technology. This is a Tuk Tuk that has beer vending for Peroni. I could see application for this everywhere, including my home town of Chicago.
So display cooking is huge right now. People want to see their food being prepared, and I found that Wood Stone’s done a really great job, and it’s from their pizza ovens to their rotating barbecues. They’ve got some really great products to look at.
So fresh is really in right now. This machine from FRANKE is their bean to cup system. It does hot. It does cold. It’s got customized displays and a really cool piece of technology. That’s a great looking cup of coffee.
From Hatco comes a traditional waffle maker, but just take a look at this. With each one you can also do all of these different configurations for hot kind of trendy new products, which makes it particularly awesome.
Again, multi-functionality is big and getting bigger, ovens that can cook and clean, do 100 different things. You see a lot of companies doing a great job with that like ITW. They’re a real leader out there in terms of both quality and trying to do what’s best for the operator.
So as you’ve seen in my What’s New in Food series, robotics are big and getting bigger. Here is the latest bartending machine from FOLLETT.
One of the areas that’s really taking off in food right now is catering. And some companies are really taking a look at this like RATIONAL who developed a self-cooking center, holding, and everything you would need to serve a catered banquet of 500 people with a staff of two. That’s what I call value added.