The food and dining industry has picked up in the recent past around the world. Eating out is now more of a lifestyle element and people of almost all preferences and income groups eat out. This has attracted budding entrepreneurs to invest in the industry and many new entrepreneurs prefer opening up some sort of food business over any other business.
As profitable as it might sound, setting up a food business can be tricky and it is important to plan it out smartly if you want sustainable growth. One of the most capital intensive aspects of an eatery business is getting the equipment and tools that you will be needing for your business. You must know exactly what equipment you will be needing and with what capacity limitations. If you end up purchasing something that you do not need, such as a meat slicer for a vegetarian restaurant, you will end up increasing your fixed costs. Likewise, lacking the capacity in terms of required equipment can result in poor product and service. That brings food entrepreneurs down to the question that exactly what equipment and tools should they be having when launching their new eatery. Here are some of their necessities that will help you.
Refrigerator/ Cold Storage
Regardless of what kind of an eatery you are planning to launch, you will need a refrigerator or cold storage to maintain the temperature of your cold beverages and perishables. You must invest in a commercial-grade refrigerator. If you are expecting very high demand, or if cold beverages and perishables such as meat are your primary ingredients, you might need to invest in more than refrigerators. You can get a commercial refrigerator between $1500 to $3000 depending on size and features.
Commercial Ice machines
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One of the gravest mistakes that you can make is to rely on your regular refrigerators and freezers for ice production. Imagine your customers asking for ice for their beverages and you run out of it because freezing units take some time to make ice and they can only produce a certain amount of ice in a given time. That is why it is extremely important to invest in commercial ice machines to be able to meet your demand smoothly. These machines are designed to provide ice on demand and are available for the different capacity requirement. The average price of a commercial ice machine starts at $1500 for basic models and can go up to $5000 for more advanced models. Air-cooled machines are cheaper than the water-cooled ones, however, the latter is more efficient.
Regardless of the size and nature of your business, a microwave oven is an absolute necessity and you cannot do without one. It helps a lot with basic cooking, baking and heating needs in a rush when your other major equipment is busy. If you wish to run a larger setup, you should be having multiple microwave ovens. Invest in commercial-grade microwave ovens that have a larger volume and can perform multiple functions at the same time. A good quality commercial grade microwave ranges between $400 to $500
Whether you need to prepare a dessert, a few cupcakes, some loaves of bread or a meal such as lasagna, a commercial-grade oven is essential for any eatery. Do not undermine the importance of an oven even if your primary menu does not consist of any oven based dishes. Basic pizza ovens start at $150 and are mostly available for less than $1000. A moderately sized multi-purpose oven ranges between $1500-$3000. However, the costs of full-sized bakery oven units for large scale operations can exceed $20000.
The aforementioned equipment is the most basic one that every eatery will need to function smoothly. Note that most of this equipment needs to be commercial-grade quality, which makes them an expensive investment. Other basic costs that you will have to bear at the time of start-up may include fixtures and fittings, utility, insurance, repairs and renovations, rental costs and legal costs. That can create a lot of cost burden on the entrepreneur. It is advisable that in the initial stage you consider leasing the equipment to ease the burden on your existing cash flow. Here is a quick round-up of all the aforementioned unit cost.
|Refrigerator||$1500 – $3000|
|Commercial Ice Machine||$1500 – $5000|
|Microwave Oven||$400 – $500|
|Basic Pizza Oven||$100 – $600|
|Average multi-purpose oven||$1500 – $3000|
|Large-scale bakery units||>$20,000|