Ghost kitchens – companies providing kitchen infrastructure for new or existing food service concepts looking to expand quickly with delivery-only offerings – are rapidly gaining steam in our “new normal” and are poised to transform a significant portion of the food service industry.
While there are a few different iterations on the ghost kitchen business model, from our perspective in working with a number of them, one of the things uniting these businesses is a voracious need for and use of data. Ghost kitchens are essentially tech companies that happen to produce food.
If your business is providing infrastructure for other restaurant concepts to create and deliver their products, this demands a kind of agility and visibility that kitchens have never historically had. Pivoting from pizza to burgers, fried chicken sandwiches to dumplings, ghost kitchen infrastructure must have the means to support a wide range of clientele that often iterate quickly on ingredients and recipes.
Having cooking equipment that can communicate critical data to ensure maximum uptime and high product quality while minimizing operating costs help ghost kitchen operators deliver on their promises to their clients. Ghost kitchen equipment also needs the ability to receive menu or recipe updates on a regular basis as offerings – or clientele using the equipment – change.
As an example, a typical QSR might update recipes on key cooking equipment three or four times per year as they have seasonal menu changes or limited time offers (LTOs). We are working with a ghost kitchen concept that requires multiple menu changes to their equipment per day.
These kinds of capabilities enabling the innovative and disruptive food service business models for ghost kitchens were really not feasible before the advent of solutions like Open Kitchen, which can integrate across kitchen equipment from any OEM, help maintain safe food storage conditions, and control energy consumption to improve profitability.
We are intrigued by the promise of ghost kitchens to drive more innovation in the food service industry and are excited to be playing a key role in this disruptive new model.
Curious to learn more about how we can support the digitization of the commercial kitchen – ghost or not? Drop us a line!