Five Tips For Food Organization In Your Walk-In Refrigerator
Your walk-in refrigerator lets you store ingredients your restaurant uses every day, but keeping it organized is critical for expediting food service and making sure your finished dishes are the best they can be. Use this guide to help keep your walk-in organized and ready to use for each meal service.
Get Specific With Labels
It isn't enough just to label the contents of every box and container on your shelves. You'll want to list the dates the items were purchased, and if anything was cooked and then frefrigerated, list the dates the food was prepared. This will help you to rotate out your foods so the older items are used first. Consider adding dry erase labels to plastic food storage containers to make it easier to mark items as they come into the refrigerator.
Don't Overcrowd The Refrigerator
Having too much stored in your walk-in refrigerator can prevent adequate air circulation. Be sure to leave room near the fans for air to circulate, and avoid overstocking your shelves. If you run out of room in your walk-in, you can always add a reach-in unit to supplement your food storage space. You'll also want to make sure that each shelf has food evenly distributed to avoid tipping or breaking of shelves.
Arrange Foods Vertically
Your foods should be organized vertically to prevent cross-contamination. Place produce on upper shelves and meats and poultry on lower shelves. This will prevent contamination that might occur from potential leaks in the packaging for your meats. Keep like meat products together, so chicken isn't stored with pork or steak. You should also consider wrapping meats individually before placing them in your food storage containers.
Part of keeping your walk-in refrigerator organized is to keep it clean. Check the items on your shelves regularly for dates, which will help you to get rid of items that are expired or no longer fresh. You'll also want to sweep the floor, as dirt and dust can be tracked in by your staff as they enter to retrieve ingredients. Wipe down shelves, but be sure to use separate cleaning cloths for each shelf so you don't cross-contaminate when cleaning meat and produce storage sections.
A tidy walk-in refrigerator will make it easy for your staff to find the items they need, and it can ensure that your staff is always using fresh ingredients for each and every meal service in your restaurant. For more information, talk to a professional like Hy-Point Restaurant Equipment & Supplies Inc.