Foodservice Equipment Reports Fortnightly

Welcome to FER Fortnightly Online Newsletter
January 30, 2007

Economic Report:
Sponsored by:
HOFEX 2007
Technomic Tweaks 2007 Forecast, Boosts Full Service
Consumers' Mood Improves As Gasoline Prices Fall
Outlooks Tick Up In Europe, China, Down Elsewhere

Regulatory Report:
Sponsored by:
Lincoln Foodservice Products Inc./Enodis
New Jersey's New Food Code Finally Nods To FDA
California Food Code To Change July 1
Georgia's New Food Code Finally Kicks In
New Code Says You Have To Be Green To Build In Santa Cruz
County Inspection Grades Clearer Than Dancing Rules

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In This Section:
NRA Names 19 Products KI Award Recipients
Last Roundup For Charity Riders To NAFEM Show?
California Utilities Tell How To Boost Profits With Energy Savings
New Discoveries May Help Prevent E. Coli Outbreaks
Where's Kevin Bacon When We Need Him?

This issue's Economic ReportSponsor: HOFEX 2007
Regulatory Report
Sponsor: Lincoln Foodservice Products Inc./Enodis

Industry Report A.J. Antunes & Co.

NRA Names 19 Products KI Award Recipients
Looking for products that really break new ground? The National Restaurant Association announced last week it has named 19 new products to be recipients of the association's 2007 Kitchen Innovation Awards.

The KI Awards program, now in its third year, honors innovative products that truly advance the state of the industry. The 19 honorees will be showcased at the Kitchen Innovation Pavilion as part of the NRA Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show, to be held May 19-22 at McCormick Place in Chicago.

This year's judging panel, including nine well known experts from the multiunit operator and consultant communities, selected the following products to be recognized:

  • Action Comax Environmental, BioX: This food waste decomposition unit uses a biological process to break down up to 1,500 lbs./day of food waste. It fits in a kitchen, is odorless, and produces waste that can be flushed down the drain or used for irrigation.
  • Alto-Shaam, Combitherm Smoker: This new countertop piece serves as a combi oven-steamer with a patented smoker system. Boilerless design eliminates many of the maintenance issues associated with conventional, boiler-based steam units.
  • Alto-Shaam, ASF-75G Gas Fryer: A radical new burner and heat exchanger arrangement earns very high marks for efficiency in third-party ASTM test procedures, and extended oil life contributes to economical operation.
  • Beverage-Air, ChillStar: This new blast chiller, with Intelligent Food Recognition, uses a multi-sensor probe to optimize chilling without degrading surface quality.
  • Blodgett Corp., XCEL.5E Hydrovection: The first self-cleaning electric convection oven uses numerous design innovations to radically reduce cleaning labor.
  • Campus Products, Silvershine Cutlery Drying Machine: This dryer uses 170°F heated granulate and UV light to polish and sanitize.
  • Cleveland Range/Enodis, Convotherm 606 Mini-Combi Oven Steamer: This one got an innovation nod at Equip'Hotel in Paris, too, for bringing full-size-type features, plus energy and water efficiency to a countertop unit.
  • Delfield Co./Enodis, Versa Drawer: This refrigerated piece gives you four separately controlled drawer units in one footprint—refrigerate, freeze, chill and thaw.
  • Electrolux Professional, Tilting Pressure Braising Pan: All the advantages of a tilting braising pan, PLUS pressurization that shortens cook times by as much as half.
  • Hobart Corp., 3000 Series Slicer: "Select-a-stroke" lets you set stroke length, and numerous detail refinements take sanitation and cleanability to the next level.
  • Lincoln Foodservice Products/Enodis, FastBake: Next-generation impingement technology improves finished-goods quality, saves energy and pushes cook times a claimed 10% to 30% faster.
  • Master-Bilt Products, Master Controller with Reverse Cycle Defrost: It does what it says—the system reverses the flow of hot gas refrigerant all the way back through the evaporator, in effect defrosting from the inside of the coil, reducing defrost times and in the process, cutting energy usage.
  • Meiko, Waste Air Heat Recovery System: This system, for warewashers, reclaims heat that ordinarily would be waste and channels it to preheat incoming rinse water. The payoff: significant energy savings.
  • Pitco Frialator/Middleby, Solstice Rethermalizer: A unique burner/baffle design is the story here, putting more heat on target, more quickly, for faster cooking and better energy efficiency.
  • Pitco Frialator/Middleby, Solstice Supreme Gas Fryer: Like the Solstice Rethermalizer, this fryer uses a unique burner/baffle system that eliminates the need for a blower fan, which reduces excess airflow and greasy buildup.
  • San Jamar, Kleen-Brush: This clever assembly mounts a fingernail/hand brush to any gooseneck faucet and accepts most leading brands of brushes.
  • Scotsman Ice Systems/Enodis, Prodigy Cube Ice Machine: Patented mineral-sensing technology powers the WaterSense purge control, which adjusts purge water volume based on how much mineral residue needs to be removed.
  • Randell/Unified Brands, FX Series: This Energy Star-rated series of refrigerated drawers uses a patented magnetic lid sealing an insulated insert to assure security, temperature control and energy efficiency.
  • Vulcan-Hart Co., PowerSteam: This floor model gas steamer uses a combination of high-output generator and efficient burner design to create and sustain 235°F superheated steam, greatly increasing productivity.


Section sponsored by A.J. Antunes & Co.

Last Roundup For Charity Riders To NAFEM Show?
Hard to believe, but for you industry motorcyclists who've ever hoped to ride in the biennial fundraising charity ride to The NAFEM Show, this year might be your last roundup.

That's because this year's show, Oct. 11-13 in Atlanta, will be the last one held during the show's traditional September-October period. Starting in 2009, the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers will be holding its extravaganza in Orlando, in February. That dead-of-winter timing will make riding virtually impossible for northern motorcyclists, drastically cutting the feasibility of such an event and probably drawing to a close what has become a major industry charity fundraiser.

"This [likely] will be the last Road To NAFEM event," volunteer coordinator Alexa Kinney said. "It's the end of an era. So sad."

In the fundraiser's inaugural year, 1999, riders hit "The Road To Dallas" on their way to The NAFEM Show there, and in the process raised roughly $40,000 for an organization known as Foodchain before it became part of America's Second Harvest. Subsequently, "The Road To Orlando," "The Road To New Orleans" and "The Road To Anaheim" grew steadily, raising money for Second Harvest. The '05 event, to Anaheim, raised more than $80,000 for Second Harvest operations aiding Hurricane Katrina victims.

Early planning is underway for "The Road To Atlanta," Kinney said. Arrival in Atlanta will be timed to allow for pre-show association meetings including board and committee obligations. Some riders have already signed up. Routes, lodging stops and other details remain to be worked out.

To sign up or get more information, please email Kinney at

Section sponsored by A.J. Antunes & Co.

California Utilities Tell How To Boost Profits With Energy Savings
Flex Your Power, California's statewide energy efficiency marketing and outreach campaign, has a new booklet out to help you save energy. Called "Boosting Restaurant Profits With Energy Efficiency," the best practices guide includes information on food prep and cooking equipment, sanitation and water usage, heating and air conditioning, refrigeration and lighting.

The section on heating and ventilation, for example, talks about demand ventilation in the kitchen. A recent study by Pacific Gas & Electric's Food Service Technology Center in San Ramon found that a demand ventilation system in the Mark Hopkins Hotel in San Francisco yielded a 62% energy savings, or about $10,000 a year. The FSTC is one of the major contributors to the new booklet.

For more information on the booklet, go to

Section sponsored by A.J. Antunes & Co.

New Discoveries May Help Prevent E. Coli Outbreaks
Two new discoveries could let Taco Bell, Taco John's, spinach growers and the rest of us breathe a little easier.

U.S. Department of Agriculture researchers at the Agricultural Research Service's Food and Feed Safety Research Unit in College Station, Texas, have developed and patented a feed additive that reduces E. coli bacteria in animals. In tests, mixing a chlorate compound in animal feed two days before slaughter effectively reduced E. coli in cattle and Salmonella in chickens. In cattle, levels of E. coli in the animals' fecal material fell from 100,000 cells per gram to 100 cells per gram. The additive is being submitted to regulatory agencies for approval.

At the University of Minnesota, Food Science and nutrition professor Joellen Feirtag has been testing Russian technology that could help you prevent E. coli and other foodborne illness outbreaks in your own stores.

Russian scientists developed an unusual salt-and-water electrolytic process that, unlike other electrolytics, produces a pH-neutral solution that can be sprayed on the foods without altering flavor or appearance. Feirtag says she met the scientists and was skeptical of the electrolytic process at first, but her tests have convinced her it's an inexpensive alternative to sanitation chemicals in most processing plants. It also could easily be used in restaurants. The pH-neutral solution is already "allowable" so doesn't need further approval from the USDA or U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Section sponsored by A.J. Antunes & Co.

Where's Kevin Bacon When We Need Him?
And this one, just for fun and weirdness: Kevin Bacon, at least in his role as the dancing teen in the movie Footloose, would never make it in Pinal County, Ariz.

The county recently slapped a bar owner with a $5,000 fine for letting patrons dance. We're not talking pole dancing or breakdancing here, but seniors and children waltzing and two-stepping.

The San Tan Flat Saloon & Grill in Queen Creek, it seems, has had a few outbreaks of happy feet on the outdoor patio when live music is featured. And apparently some of the action is audible to nearby neighbors.

The county has never cited the restaurant for noise violations, however, because the noise has always been within acceptable limits. Instead, the county attorney's office found obscure references in county code that allow dancing only in an enclosed space. So the outdoor patio is verboten for dancing.

Owner Dale Bell, who says the bar has never advertised or encouraged the dancing, says the county charged him anyway with operating a dance hall, a code violation.

The county has told Bell he'll be fined an additional $5,000 per day starting Feb.17 if he continues to allow dancing outside. To add insult to injury, a hearing officer said the restaurant needs more parking spaces to meet code.

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