How Connected Facilities Add Value for Food Retailers

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Americans spend more than 759 billion dollars on groceries every year, a figure that has more than doubled since the early 1990s. Today, supermarkets are offering so much more than what’s on a basic shopping list. Grocery stores have evolved into large, complicated operations that rely on high-level facility performance and a wide range of critical equipment in order to be successful. To support this growth, food retailers can use connected facilities to improve their bottom lines.

Supermarkets use a long list of critical equipment to keep customers comfortable and satisfied. In addition to HVAC and refrigeration units, many food retailers are now also implementing other types of equipment (think ghost kitchens, air purification units, and more) to further growth and increase revenue. As a result, grocery store operations create ample opportunity to use automation and analytics as tools to enhance equipment performance, streamline operations, and save money.

Having the ability to connect, analyze, and control key equipment is a game-changer for facility managers. Solutions like Open Kitchen enhance operational efficiencies and improve food and facility safety. With greater visibility over things like refrigeration units, HVAC systems, lighting, and kitchen equipment, supermarkets have the ability to shift from reactive to proactive equipment maintenance. A broader facility overview, paired with key insights into critical equipment, enables grocers to spot equipment issues in real-time and make repairs before catastrophic failures occur.

Some of the benefits food retailers experience from using connected facilities include:

  • Reduced energy consumption through better visibility into equipment on/off usage patterns and taking corrective actions
  • Alerts that catch equipment failure before it happens
  • Helpful diagnostic information for preventative maintenance
  • Increased food safety with temperature tracking, real-time alerts, and digital checklists
  • Time and money savings through automated recipe distribution (especially beneficial for supermarkets with multiple locations so recipes can be pushed directly from the cloud)
  • Overall reduction in energy expenses, maintenance costs, and equipment downtime

In addition to these benefits, using fresh preservation technology controlled through Open Kitchen helps supermarkets even further by extending the shelf life of perishable items. Bluezone by Middleby keeps refrigeration environments free of damaging contaminants that cause produce to deteriorate prematurely. The unit uses UV-enhanced oxidation to eliminate 99.9 percent of mold and bacteria as well as ethylene gas in walk-in refrigerators. Through this process, Bluezone not only extends shelf life, reduces waste, and protects profits, but also cleans the air, which has become more important than ever during the global pandemic.

Supermarket operations are more complex than ever. Creating a connected facility provides the control needed to closely manage critical equipment and go from reactive to proactive monitoring. Grocers will save time and money through increased visibility into lighting, refrigeration controls, heating/cooling systems, kitchen equipment, and so much more.

Interested in learning more about how connected facilities enhance operational efficiencies in supermarkets? Email one of our experts to chat.