In a world where everything is about fast climbing the social scale and moving forward at the job, time seems to have shrunk, leaving everyone exhausted and unable to socialize anymore.

    Most times after long hours at work, the only wish left is to be alone and do nothing or find it easier to socialize with people from work which can be useful and also damaging because:

    • It can encourage teamwork
    • It can make the days easier at work
    • It’s easy to find common conversations
    • It can offer more insights about things happening in the company

    But it can also:

    • Break boundaries necessary to stay professional
    • Create opportunity for gossip about colleagues or the boss

     

    Finding The Balance

    Hospitality business is one of the most rewarding but also of the most demanding. Long hours, exhausting work and no time for anything else, can take a toll on one’s life but also on the life of the loved ones. No going out with friends, no time for dates, visit the family.

    Lack of social life and also no time to relax can lead to a series of troubles like:

    • Anxiety
    • Mood swings
    • Problems with interpersonal relationships
    • Obesity
    • Mostly any pain and ache can be related to overwhelming work stress.

    Making sure to make time for friends and family, even if the timing is not when they expect, it is important to have a good and relaxing sitting with the loved ones.

    Also very important is to take good care of the health and nutrition. The temptation while at work is huge to snack during tasks, eating unhealthy food like fast food when on breaks and not only, but also after a long work schedule when getting home tired and it feels easier to order unhealthy food.

    De - stressing With A Healthy Lifestyle

    An amazing way to keep healthy while also keeping in touch with the loved ones is:

    • Organize the time to meet at the gym or to have an outdoor activity like jogging, hiking, balling.
    • Prepare healthy meals together
    • Replacing unhealthy snacks with organic ones such as the organic raw bars, very good and accessible.

    Other than a healthy nutrition, long hours standing can put a strain on the back muscles, legs and can lead to headaches, back pain and varicose veins. With a proper fitness regime, all this can be improved and it is a good chance to spend time with friends.

    Managing long shifts in the Hospitality business can have a big impact on the social life but most importantly on the health and learning how to balance life and work takes a bit of education on how to combine nutrition, fitness and overall wellness with the demanding work.

    So what is the priority and how to juggle life and work?

    At a younger age, career seems to be the priority, but as work takes a toll over the years, the importance of health and wellbeing becomes more and more obvious. They are both important, but as long as there is a balance between them.

    Steel is one of the most widely used alloy and in particular Stainless Steel.

    Used in industries such as aviation, constructions, medical and not to forget the industry that everybody is part of, the food industry.

    Often enough the only thought when eating out is the quality and quantity of the food, the ambiance, almost never the cutleries and other appliances.

    Why are cutleries important? Important is the material they are made of. Most are made of steel, but what grade of steel, since not all grades of steel are safe. The 18/8 grade steel is the most commonly used in the restaurant business.

    Most foods contain natural acids, so appliances made out of metals like iron will corrode quite fast, whereas stainless steel 18/8 does not have this issue.

    Made of 18% chromium and 8% nickel as the name suggests it, 18/8 grade steel is versatile and adaptable. It is used not just for cutleries but all kind of kitchen ware like cooking pots, hollowware and other tabletop appliances.

    Reasons why restaurants use steel

    1. Stainless steel is resilient to rust and corrosion, therefore it lasts longer
    2. Having a non porous surface, bacteria, mold and any substances cannot penetrate. Having a layer of protective chromium oxide, it is easier to keep a high hygienic standard.
    3. Stainless steel not only looks great but it’s very versatile. So it can be molded into the preferred thickness and shape for customized cutleries requirements.

    Now that the importance of kitchenware and cutleries has been explained, how about an entire restaurant made of steel?

    With the new and busy generation of restaurant visitors everything revolves around fast food and pizza places. It did not take long before whole steel restaurants were built.

    For a business, choosing the right location is essential. For a restaurant business being able to be present in a busy area during meal times, this is a success.

    Steel is stronger and lighter than wood. It is also one of the most recyclable materials. Instead of cutting hundreds of trees only for the framing of a restaurant, the same framing could be done eco friendly by using only about 40 old scrapped cars. Also since time is money, building out of steel is faster.

    When working with fire there is always the risk of accidents. A steel restaurant is safer than a wood one reducing the risk of fire considerably. It also withstands heavy snow falls, high winds and earthquakes.

    Steel and the restaurant and catering industry obviously combine well offering durability at a much more affordable cost, eco friendly solutions and safety.


    What will change or prevail in 2018 in the restaurant design. Popular are definitely green areas and lots of wood. But also new lighting techniques and materials from the past are hip. Let's see what the design trends for 2018 consist of.


    Wood paneling

    In 2018, the rustic industrial look will be a thing of the past. Warm and fresh rooms with natural materials are in. Especially wood is very popular. Wood paneling is hot and together with all other materials, colors and light sources provide the perfect environment to linger.

     

    Vegetation

    Although green plants and ornamental plants have long been popular in restaurants and hotels, this trend will prevail in 2018. With an increasing interest in the supposed positive impact of vegetal environments on health, vegetation is becoming increasingly important in interior design.

    Not only do plants look beautiful, the concept of farm-to-table is becoming increasingly popular, and therefore on site growing of herbs or other products by the restaurants will become more likely also.

     

    Customized lighting

    The lighting will be enormously influenced by the technological possibilities in 2018. Restaurants can individually control all the bulbs in the room via apps or remote control, so that every part of the room can contain the exactly proper lighting. Changing the color or dimming the lighting creates just the right atmosphere.

    Another trend in lighting are the custom-made and art-inspired fixtures. In order to create unique pieces in lighting fixtures, the collaboration between designer and artist becomes more and more important.

     

    Retro style
    In 2018, the retro look will make its comeback. Chrome metal accents are trend in the restaurant interior. Where before brass was the most used finish metal, from 2018 chrome will become more popular.

    Another retro material regaining popularity is linoleum. This wear-resistant flooring is available in all colors and shades. This natural product is therefore becoming increasingly fashionable as a restaurant floor.

    Original architecture

    More and more often restaurants are opened in beautiful old buildings or rooms with special architectural features. Previously, these rooms would be covered by elaborate finishing, colors and wallpaper. In 2018, the identity of a restaurant will no longer be determined by the interior design or room wear, but rather the craftsmanship will be emphasized, respecting the original architecture of the space.


    Instagram moments

    Not only beautiful dishes are a beloved topic for photography in a restaurant but above all the combination with other special features is in. The photo composition has to be suitable for Instagram to be trendy. Whether these are special objects, or a special space aspect, it must look photogenic. Popular are natural materials and plants, combined with special or personal elements, perfect for the right Instagram image.

    Studies have shown an alarming increase of food waste all over the world with the USA being the leader, and not enough awareness not only in the food and beverage industry but also on an individual level.

    This is all the more sad knowing how many countries suffer from lack off food and water.

    Cape Town is the first to face the danger of water waste, approaching the day of the drought, this is alarming for the rest of the world and it should be an eye opener.

    Lately organisations like ReFED and Food Waste Reduction Alliance, have united to increase awareness and trigger an alarm signal all over the world creating guidelines for good practices on how to reduce food and water waste.

    How To Create Awareness

    One of the first and most important ways to reduce food and water waste is Awareness. It can be achieved in many ways and on many levels such as:

      • in the media, by creating national campaigns in television, radio, brochures, posters
      • in schools, by teaching kids and teenagers the effects of food and water waste and how to improve reduction. Also by practicing such as cooking classes and different workshops
      • each restaurant owner individually to educate their staff in what exactly waste means and what can be done to reduce it.

     

    How To Apply The Best Sustainability Practices

    The second most important is Sustainability.  Some of the easiest and most efficient trends and practices of sustainability also supported by the National Restaurant Association, that most responsible restaurants and food service owners are taking are:

      • Using energy saving lighting, like sensor system lighting in certain areas, programmed heating systems, thermostat air conditioners.
      • Donating remaining unused food to charities and individuals in need instead of throwing away perfectly good food. There are food banks all over the world that will even come and collect non-perishable food or even leftovers from events and distribute it to those in need.
      • Saving water by using low-flush toilets that uses as little as 1.6 gallons of water for a flush, comparing to a standard one can can use from 3.5 to 7 gallons for a flush, not to mention the cost saving using these new toilets.

     

    Food waste has contributed to excess consumption of fresh water and emission of CO2 from food decomposition that impacts the global climate change. More than this, there is a food shortage in the world and an increase in the agricultural production is in need, unfortunately this has been proven more difficult than expected due to the climate change.

    Food waste increase in the recent years shows the lack of education and awareness mostly caused by little economy knowledge, poor stock management or neglect when it comes to quantity purchase of individuals and restaurants.

    In conclusion, if everybody will educate in what the real implications of food waste are and how to contribute to the sustainability, probably would not be long until the global food waste situation will improve and along with it, the global climate as well.



    Who would have thought only years ago that the food will come from the ‘hands’ of robots, that the human workforce will not be enough anymore.

    It is a known fact that one of the biggest issues globally now is to provide food that is of sufficient quality but mainly quantity to feed and nourish the ever growing world population.

    The Precision Of Machines

    It might seem weird that people are replaced by machines, but when a device has the ability to think like a human and more than this, according to UK’s Institute of Mechanical Engineers, as much as half of the food produced all over the world ends up as waste every year when handled by humans, where as machines have reduced food waste a lot, then maybe the best thing to do is embrace technology and artificial intelligence.

    But let’s see just how much AI (Artificial Intelligence) has been taken over in the recent years.

     

    • Robotic Restaurants

     

    A hi-tech KFC restaurant has opened in Shanghai, China. Meet DUMI, the robot that runs the restaurant, takes orders, can handle order changes and sides.

     

    • Robotic Kitchen Assistants

     

    CaliBurger in California has teamed up with Miso Robotics and has welcomed  FLIPPY, the robot that can flip burgers, as well as fry, prepare and plate food.

     

    • Robot Waitress

     

    PEPPER, the humanoid robot waitress that takes customers orders, makes products recommendations and handles MasterCard payments.

    How will this affect the day to day life and livelihood of Food Service employees.

    If even President Obama has expressed concerns over how AI will affect the jobs of people all over the world, should that be a reason of concern the fast evolving pace of technology and how much should the food industry embrace the integration of robotics?

    Shortfalls Of AI

    Sure, some industries can benefit from the use of Artificial Intelligence more than others with great improvement such as banks, commerce, retail, mostly online services where the human interaction is minimum, but when it comes to direct customer service, things are very different.

    Let’s see how effective and well developed is  AI really.

    • DUMI can replace a real human restaurant manager for example, but he can’t understand different accents, therefore can’t really interact with everybody.
    • FLIPPY turned out to be too slow and expensive to take over completely as a real chef. Not to mention, it needed Humans to help it keep up with the order demand.
    • PEPPER is supposed to read emotions, but it seems it was not too good at real –like interaction.

     

    From agriculture to production and service, we observe a huge involvement of AI in the Food Industry has been more present, indicating that the human workforce can’t handle the food demand that has increased lately.

    Machines can obviously improve the process, being faster, more accurate and programmed to reach perfection, but when it comes to service, to dealing directly with the customer’s needs that are never simple or exact, AI can and has been proven to fail, because emotions can not be programmed.

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