Regardless of the size and stature of your business, if it houses a commercial kitchen, the goal of a renovation should be the same and the design principles should be the same.
The space should be both functional and safe, preventing injury, illness and contamination and enabling an efficient service to be delivered time and time again. Below we have put some areas that are integral to the design of a new kitchen in the renovation process.
The most important legal aspects that you should be aware of and be compliant with in your kitchen are –
• Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004 on the hygiene of foodstuffs.
• The Food Hygiene (England) Regulations 2006 (as amended) (and equivalent regulations in Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland).
• The Building Act 1984.
• Food Safety Act 2006.
• Environmental Protection Act 1990.
• Water Industry Act 1999.
The Kitchen Flow Chart –
1. Goods In
2. Storage (Cold and Ambient)
7. Dishes returned from dining room
8. Plates scrapped into waste bins
9. Put into dishwasher
Delivery and Storage
When renovating your commercial kitchen, it is essential to bear in mind the delivery of goods. Delivery vehicles should be able to easily access your premises and ideally, direct access to the catering area; chilled food should be kept cool as placed in refrigeration as soon as it is received by the business.
The designated storage areas for chilled, frozen and dry good should have adequate space for people to enter them. This ensures they can be organised, maintained and cleaned thoroughly with ease.
Food hygiene is essential in any kitchen, especially those catering to the general public, the areas is which the food is prepared play a large role in maintaining high food prep standards.
Careful consideration should be taken to define and segregate areas for raw and prepared food to eliminate the possibility of cross contamination.
The workflow and processes should also be considered. Work stations should be positioned between storage and the cook line.
There should be an adequate number of sinks for preparation, hand washing (with constant supplies of hot and cold running water) and pot washing – this is laid out as a requirement in the Catering Guidance document.
Your menu should dictate your equipment requirements, this will enable you to be aware of the workflow that will take place, and any safety aspects that need to be considered in the design and layout.
The emphasis should be placed on equipment that is going to deliver a speedy and efficient service. This means combination ovens, energy efficient grills and induction hobs and will benefit you in 3 ways; reduced energy costs, reduced cooking times resulting in reduced customer waiting times and reduced cleaning and maintenance.
Many professional kitchens choose to have their fast cook equipment close to the pass, like griddles and fryers and bulky equipment like combi ovens and boiling pans furthest away from it.
Electrical and Mechanical Installations
If you have decided to switch to an entirely electrical system as an alternative to gas then the incoming electrical supply will need to be checked.
The supply will need to cope with the equipment demands, in some cases a 3 phase electrical supply will need to be installed.
Most well designed commercial kitchens house a ‘service spine’. This can be found as an island unit and within it most of the associated services can be located for equipment situated around it. The island is also incorporated into the ventilation system.
Ventilation is a critical part of a commercial kitchen, and can be either natural or mechanical, although most kitchen have both.
Kitchens that are using gas cooking equipment must adhere to the rules and regulations set out. Gas interlock systems must also be installed.
Commercial Canopies are usually equipped with ventilation systems that include canopies with a grease filter system and ducting to the outside air. In order to maintain safety and hygiene levels, the filters must be cleaned regularly and under no circumstances should the systems be operated if filters are missing or damaged. This can lead to dangerous levels of grease to build up.
When planning your renovation, please allow for these canopy systems to be constructed in a way that allows access to cleaning and maintenance.
Food Service Area
A well designed kitchen should have suitable space for hot and cold before it is served. The kitchen should be set out in a way that allows for heated gantries close to the pass to allow for a smooth delivery of food from the kitchen to the customer.
The dishwashing area should be large enough to adequately house space for the dishwasher and sinks as well as room for personnel to load the dishwasher, wash items and unload the dishwasher. There should also be enough room storage and disposal of waste and the storage of clean equipment and crockery.
Cleaning products and materials should be safely stored away to prevent any contact with food.
The area may require a canopy to remove steam and condensation that is produced whilst the dishwasher is in operation.