Whether you are opening a restaurant or re-furbishing your establishment, one of the issues you will need to address is your cold storage and refrigeration.
You may be looking at individual units, but a walk-in cold room could be the preferred solution depending on the amount of stock you need to store on a regular basis. The Food Standards Agency has specific guidelines on food storage, and these need to be adhered to, whether you are storing raw or cooked items.
There are various options, but you may decide that a cold room is the best option for your business needs.
If that is the case, then information on walk in cold rooms is available at many sites such as fridgefreezerdirect.co.uk/cold-rooms/integrated-cold-rooms.
If the size of your premises will dictate your choice, a walk-in cooler may be an option even if you feel that you do not have enough square footage available. They can be provided in a space as small as six feet by six feet, although you will need space above and on either side for them to work efficiently, depending upon the type of refrigeration system in place.
If you do not have that amount of space, then a refrigerator will be the preferred solution.
Should you be able to opt for a walk-in cooler, there are many advantages, and some of these will depend on how much fresh produce you are hoping to store.
A dedicated space will mean that raw foods can be easily stored separate from other products and help to prevent cross-contamination. A walk-in space provides you with much more room to store items and means they are easily spotted by staff regularly moving goods.
Another plus is that you will be able to ensure a constant temperature as opposed to free-standing units which may be over-stocked, leading to fluctuations in temperature. This is vital since certain products require a constant temperature to maintain freshness and avoid loss of stock impacting on profit levels.
A cold room can also prove cost-effective as it will provide more storage per cubic metre compared with a range of refrigerators.
Another saving could be your energy bills. A well-insulated cold room will use less energy than several refrigeration units providing an equivalent amount of storage.