Culinary Quips

Chef Barlow Interview Cont...

ConvothermQ: What is your favorite Manitowoc Foodservice brand of equipment and why?
A: Convotherm combi ovens, for its power and efficiency. Steam cooking harnesses a lot of power with a better yield and faster cook time. The easyToUCHTM panel also allows for easy use and consistent quality every time.

Q: What is the importance of having quality, reliable equipment in a kitchen? Can you cite an example where equipment reliability impacted a restaurant/kitchen operation?
A: To large chain customers that require the same high quality and consistent food, it's all about volume, which is what creates revenue for QSRs. So when you build a quality product that can produce that volume, they recognize the value in that partnership and its products. Right now many of the chains are looking to grow globally and by providing quality, consistent equipment and with our global capabilities, we are able to help them meet their goals.

Q: What up and coming trend do you see on the horizon in foodservice? And how can Manitowoc Foodservice play a role in it?
A: I see two major trends happening right now in the industry. The first is gluten free movement. Many of these products are now in mass production, and when I highlight the fact that we can create an application for gluten free foods with our equipment, it is a win for everyone.

The other trend is related to environmental sustainability and biodegradable packaging. For those who are looking for a mobile opportunity for their brand or just a mom and pop food truck cooking directly in the service container, this can be a game changer. Many pieces of our equipment can directly cook food packaged in biodegradable packaging, which is a perfect match for the food truck or mobile operator.

Q: In which segment in the industry do you see the greatest opportunity?
A: C-stores are growing segment for prepared foods that are at a quality level that is par with some of the QSR restaurants. Allowing the consumer to make fewer stops and get on with their day.

Q: How do you see consumer's eating habits influencing the foodservice industry now and in the future?
A: Consumers want healthier, more personalized experiences in the QSR segment. The Chipotle model is one that QSR's both existing and up-and-coming will emulate because of their faster adjustments to menu items, locally sourced products and the ability to customize their foods. Consumers are demanding these and in order to stay relevant restaurants will have to comply.

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