Among all the ways the coronavirus has influenced our lives, it has also forever changed the way the restaurant industry will operate moving forward. While the masses will undoubtedly flock to their favorite eateries and bars once social interaction is no longer faux pas, third-party food delivery apps have officially become a “common” means of eating. Uber Eats reported a 10% surge in sales in March. Door Dash has taken steps toward an initial public offering. This uptick in delivery-only transactions has also taken the concept of ghost kitchens from trial period to center stage.
For those still squinting from the light due to your recent shelter-in-place stint, a ghost kitchen is food delivery without the dine-in option. It is a kitchen, a kitchen staff, and an eager delivery fleet armed with all the eatery branding and packaging familiar to the customer. In many instances, there can be multiple restaurant brands occupying the same general kitchen space, owned by the same owner or franchisee.
The ghost kitchen space has seen an increase in new entrepreneurs in the last 18 months. More are expected due to the public’s shift in dining habits. And while the movement of edible product is the top of every restauranteur’s mind, the movement of inedible byproduct can be equally important to the bottom line. The handling/hand-off of a ghost kitchen’s used cooking oil (UCO) and grease trap cleaning are crucial aspects of the business, even more so if the ghost kitchen has multiple brands operating out of the same space. To optimize a ghost kitchen and prevent UCO and grease traps from becoming a hindrance to its success, keep these six concepts in mind:
Developing Your Business
Working with a UCO partner who not only knows the restaurant business but also kitchen operations can be a valuable asset. They can provide advice based on their vast experience and adapt to your specific needs as a ghost kitchen of any size. If you’re going to work with a partner to handle your used fryer oil, why not have such industry/operations consulting included?
A true business partnership is one that not only strengthens all parties through the downturns but also shares positive windfalls. It’s these relationships you should be searching for, especially when it comes to a UCO partner. The used cooking oil market can often cause rebates for ghost kitchens. Be sure to ask potential partners about such rebates and how you can share in a positive market.
Someone Who Knows Someone
In most cases, ghost kitchens represent one or more popular franchises. Staying within operation and product guidelines is paramount in maintaining franchise compliance. Working with a UCO partner who has relationships with most major franchises can be a built-in safeguard to make sure you maintain franchise compliance.
A ghost kitchen requires many decisions from the operators. So many, in fact, that making them again and again can be costly and frustrating. This is why making only one decision on a UCO partner, storage tank and handling process can save valuable time and money. It is important to find a UCO solution that satisfies UCO handling standards across the vast majority of known eatery brands.
Keep It Simple
While selecting the right UCO and grease trap service partner can be taxing affair, everything SHOULD be easy after that decision. Your partner should be handling all your UCO and/or grease trap needs with minimal intervention, leaving you and your staff to focus on running the business. The equipment provided by your partner should also aleviate your employees’ workload with seemless end-to-end handling, ensuring the UCO travels from your fryers to an external extraction point. Having your UCO partner’s experienced associates managing UCO and grease trap handling also reduces risk in your kitchen and avoids possible worker’s compensation situations.
Assuming you are planning to expand to new markets and new locations, as we’re sure you are, you most likely are looking to develop a formula that is easily replicable, changing as few systems as possible. It can be difficult maintaining the same suppliers of goods and services when expanding your ghost kitchen concept from one coast to the other. This is why it is important to find partners who have locations across North America in any hotspot you may be considering as your next location.
DAR PRO Solutions is a thought leader in the industry for used cooking oil management and grease trap services. Our innovative equipment solutions, strong customer support, and service expertise will make handling grease a worry free part of your business. Reach out to a DAR PRO representative today and find out how your ghost kitchen or restaurant can benefit from our partnership. Call us 24/7/365 at 855-DAR-PRO1 (855-327-7761).