Across the country hospitality operators are reporting shortages in the kitchen and the problem doesn’t seem to be going away, this has led to some innovative and modern solutions to the problem.
According to CrunchBase, US-based venture capitalists have invested nearly $600 million in restaurant automation startups in the past 3 years alone, as they see staffing issues as a growing problem.
“This is more than just a temporary issue, commercial kitchens have been struggling to fill their available positions for years, there just aren’t enough chefs in the labour pool to meet the demand, and it’s not just in Australia, the US and Europe are experiencing it too,” said Bradley Backhouse, Chef and CEO of Kitchintel, A restaurant automation startup.
Kitchintel, an Australian based startup, has designed a fully automated grill that can cook hundreds of steaks, chicken, pork, lamb, fish or any protein the chef chooses.
“Automations are coming” says Bradley “It’s not a matter of if but when. Currently, there are many robotics that the entire kitchen needs to be designed around and only perform very simple tasks like flipping a burger. When we designed our fully automated grill, we made sure it could fit in any kitchen and work alongside the chefs helping them day to day. The result is a machine that allows one chef to have the output of 2-3 chefs”.
The understaffing of commercial kitchens is a bigger problem than ever, according to ChefHire General Manager, Dwain Watkins “ We have seen a greater demand for agency chefs even from smaller venues who wouldn’t traditionally go down the agency route. A lot of clients are reporting placing ads with no one applying or scheduling interviews and the chef not showing up.”
With an increase in food venues and a decrease in available staff you may just be eating a meal that a robot had a hand in making sooner rather than later.