PPG Paints Arena Tests Food Lockers for Concessions

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The food pickup system at the arena's Ford Food Garage features lockers with dual hot and ambient temperature compartments. Courtesy of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Aramark.

Guests at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh don’t have to wait in line for concessions in the Ford Food Garage anymore.

The Pittsburgh Penguins announced it is testing a food locker system in collaboration with Aramark, the arena’s food and beverage concessionaire, that allows guests to place mobile orders from their seats and pick up their food and drinks from one of the 24 dual-chamber, temperature-controlled food lockers.

Using the self-service concept, all arena guests can order from a new, curated menu—featuring everything from truffle buffalo chicken tenders to beer and canned cocktails—using the Penguins app. Customers will receive a text notifying them when their order is ready for pickup. Once they arrive at the locker system, customers respond “here” via text, and the locker containing their order lights up and unlocks.

“As consumer preferences continue to evolve—leaning towards faster, on-demand, and contactless self-service models—we are excited to offer hockey fans at PPG Paints Arena the latest in mobile ordering innovation,” says Alicia Woznicki, vice president of design and development of Aramark Sports and Entertainment, in a press release.

Others in the foodservice industry, like Auburn University and Rise Southern Biscuits and Righteous Chicken, also recently have turned to food lockers for reasons ranging from added convenience, a shift to a more contactless experience and to combat the labor shortage.

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