Foodservice Equipment Reports

Renovating? Replacing? Do It Smart

I read a couple items today about Wendy’s plans to make a major investment in renovating stores this year. CEO Emil Brolick told analysts this week the renovations will cost $750,000 to $850,000 each for 50 stores, all part of a capital spending projection of $225 million.

Many of you have renovation programs underway or in the planning stages. We hope that when you come to the equipment part of the plan, you bear in mind that the ROI and ROA models change somewhat when you are replacing or upgrading equipment. Yes, there are the initial costs, and the effects of depreciation of the capital goods. But there is more that needs to be added to the calculations. You can save money today and burn money on energy and utilities costs for years to come.

As this magazine makes clear month after month, much of the new equipment introduced every year is much more energy and water efficient than the models they replace. But like anything else, you get what you pay for. When you consider new equipment purchases, compare and contrast a model’s efficiencies and lifecycle costs versus that of other models in the class. There are many resources to help you do this, including the product evaluation features in FER and in the features archives at, Energy Star lists, and lists of equipment that qualifies for utility rebates. Ask manufacturers for any efficiency documentation data they have. Go to the website, the web home of the Food Service Technology Center, and check their lifecycle cost calculators and data banks.

And if you are coming to the National Restaurant Association Show in early May in Chicago, stop by the Kitchen Innovations Awards Pavilion and check out the 21 equipment and supplies items honored this year.

We also hope you will join us for the KI reception FER co-sponsors Sunday afternoon beginning at 4 p.m. at the pavilion. This event gives you a chance to kick the tires and discuss the benefits with this year’s honorees, as well as chat up the judges and us. We hope to see you there.

On a much sadder subject, we want to note the passing, way too young, of our friend Jim Calamito Feb. 27. Jim served in a number of sales roles at Carlisle Foodservice and Edlund Co., now part of Ali North America, including more than a decade in international sales. We saw him at shows all over the world. We’ll miss him greatly. Our sympathies to his wife Heidi and family. Rest in peace, friend. 


Robin Ashton

Robin Ashton


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