The National Restaurant Association announced the recipients of the 2015 Kitchen Innovations Awards, which honor equipment and technologies that increase productivity for back of the house operations and benefit restaurant operators.
“As a chef it is great to see the products receiving the 2015 Kitchen Innovations Award all offer significant advancement in back-of-house operations, and demonstrate the extent to which the manufacturing companies are in touch with culinary and key operator challenges,” says John C. Metz, convention chair for NRA Show 2015 and Executive Chef and CEO of Marlow’s Tavern, Aqua Blue, and Sterling Spoon Culinary Management.
“Each year our independent panel of judges scans the entire industry to find the products that address and solve these challenges, advancing the entire foodservice industry,” he says.
The 2015 KI Award recipients reflect the trends and topics most important to foodservice operators today. The 23 selected innovations address water waste reduction and enhanced energy efficiency, increased safety and sanitation, cross-functionality, faster cook-up times, space constraints, and smart technology that adapts to various conditions.
The 2015 Kitchen Innovations Award recipients are:
Champion Industries, Foodwaste Reduction System
Featuring counter-rotating, slow-speed, and low-noise cutters to macerate foodwaste in before heading, via a slightly sloped overhead gravity feed, to a dewatering centrifuge, the system uses repurposed gray water as its primary water supply, reducing water consumption by 20-30 percent daily.
Dagda Technologies, FryerGate
This NSF-certified safety cover protects employees from severe deep-fryer burns by providing a spring-loaded barrier against dropped objects or slipped extremities, without slowing down the cooking operation. It can be attached to any existing electric or gas fryer.
Duke Manufacturing, FlexTech Advanced Food Holding Platform
Utilizing a patented Atomized Humidity Generation System and specially designed internal vent duct panels that allow for active venting at each pan level, the FlexTech extends fried product holding times, maintains product quality and freshness longer, reduces food waste, and increases product availability by 10-15 percent.
Ecolab, Syncra Total Hand Hygiene System
Retrofitted on hand washing sinks using existing plumbing, this automated, touch-free, water-and-soap delivery system follows a strict but adjustable three-step process to ensure increased employee compliance with standardized hand-washing procedures while using 50 percent less water than traditional hand washing.
Edlund Company, Titan Max-Cut
Constructed from durable stainless steel and dishwasher safe, the Titan Max-Cut saves operators space and food prep time by incorporating four prep options—cutting, coring, wedging and dicing—into a single manual machine; just swap out the quick-change pusher and cartridge and move on to the next task.