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Efficiency in the kitchen - escape the cost trap with a combi oven

Chefs and restaurateurs, they all have the same question - is it worth it? Ultimately, an investment in kitchen equipment has to be well thought out and calculated. So it is worth comparing the costs of day-to-day challenges in the professional kitchen and to as the question, could the purchase of a combi-oven reduce energy costs and solve staffing problems without having to make any compromise in quality? At RATIONAL, we have closely examined four particular areas in which using a SelfCookingCenter creates potential savings under this aspect.

The greatest cost driver in the kitchen is electricity: it causes 70% of costs, of which 40% is for cooking alone. There is consensus in the industry that combi ovens offer huge savings both in electricity and gas consumption; shorter heating phase, lower cooking temperature and shorter cooking times are ultimately excellent features of such an appliance. "As part of our testing, we have found that you need up to 70% less energy with a SelfCookingCenter compared to conventional kitchen equipment without a combi oven. Thanks to the new triple glazed door and LED lighting, we have even been able to save another 10% compared to previous models," says Alexander Walter, Product Manager Technology, RATIONAL AG. This certainly makes a difference in the cash register. With the energy consumption display on the SelfCookingCenter introduced in September 2016, the user can constantly monitor consumption and therefore actively incorporate this in their calculation.

RATIONAL then looked at the issue of cost of goods as the next point of savings. Following a detailed comparative cook, RATIONAL understands that precise regulation and technical equipment such as iCookingControl saves an average of 20% in raw materials compared to standard cooking methods before.

Working time can also reduced by up to 50% too. The two most important reasons are rolling loads with iLevelControl and the elimination of routine tasks such as checking and turning, thanks to intelligent cooking processes. This is valuable time that could be more wisely spent on other important tasks, but which rarely appears in profitability analyses.

The fourth cost drive taken into account was cleaning, as all RATIONAL units work with a fresh steam generator, this eliminates additional costs for expensive water filters that are required in combi ovens with an injection function. On the other hand, the SelfCookingCenter descales itself automatically during cleaning, providing the RATIONAL approved cleaning products are used. This easily saves up to £500 a year.

Anyone wanting to work out the above savings in absolute figures for their own business can do so using the cost efficiency calculator found on You can either enter your own figures, or use example calculations for hotel/restaurant, supermarket or casual dining businesses. So you can quickly figure out how much you could save. In any case, it shows what you need not skimp on with a SelfCookingCenter in the hospitality industry on any account: customer satisfaction and quality.

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