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    Turkey Chili Now Available for Retherm!

    March 15th, 2013

    New Product Available for Retherm – Turkey Chili!

    • Great taste and texture!
    • Just the right amount of spice!
    • Made with Ontario Turkey!
    • Nutritional Benefits – low in fat, low in sodium, high in fibre and high in protein!

    A delicious and nutritious chili that is convenient and flexible in how it’s served.

    Click here to read more (PDF format)

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    Mistakes Waiting To Happen!

    October 12th, 2012

    The printed patient meal ticket is our tool to provide the patient with the food items that have been carefully selected for them or they have eagerly chosen. Not receiving a food item that is on their meal ticket can be quite disappointing and can affect your satisfaction scores negatively.

    Tray accuracy is very important and it makes a difference on how the meal ticket looks when staff read them to assemble the patient meal tray. So what can you do to ensure this doesn’t happen?

    Here are some tips you should consider about the printed patient meal ticket:

    • Font size and type: Make sure this is easy to read and big enough for staff to read.
    • Food item organization:  Ensure that like food items are located together on the meal ticket i.e. all beverages are in one area, all entrée items are together. Staff will then only need to look at the one area.
    • Cell setup or tray line station set up: Ensure that your cell or trayline set up corresponds with how you have “organized” the ticket.
    • Wording of food items: Make sure that food items are simple and easy to read for staff and don’t cause confusion. An example is “Splenda Sugar Substitute” and “Coffee Creamer”. Both of these food items have other food items within their name. A staff member may look at Splenda Sugar substitute” and give a sugar by mistake. Make it simple it should only read “Splenda. The same is true with the “Coffee Creamer” a coffee may be given or a creamer may be given, make it simple.
    • Supplements: The variety of supplements provided to patients these days can be confusing so coming up with a good system for labeling the supplement and printing it on the meal ticket is important. If you really want to eliminate errors you could code each supplement i.e. 125ml vanilla ensure is S4, 125ml chocolate ensure is S5. When it’s portioned out the label can be placed on it and it will include the name (so nursing can verify it’s the correct supplement) and the code. When staff are then picking the food item to place it on the meal tray they only need to look at the code not the full name. Brilliant!
    • Double of a food item: If a patient is to receive 2 Sugars, it would make sense to put the 2 before the word Sugar.  It would also be appropriate to make that 2 larger, maybe you want to bold it 2, and maybe even put some brackets around it so it’s not missed. (2)
    • New Employees: When a new employee starts provide them with a printed copy of all the food items that they may see on a printed meal ticket so they can familiarize themselves and ask questions prior to actually doing the task.
    • Highlight special items: If you have special notes or considerations for a meal tray it’s important that you possibly highlight them using a colorful highlighter. This is something that a diet clerk can do to help ensure it doesn’t get missed.

    By implementing a few of these printed meal ticket tips your tray errors will decrease and your patient meal satisfaction scores will increase. You will also see your meal tray assembly times decrease as the simple, organized approach will speed up tray assembly.

    You may need to consult your nutritional software representatives to inquire about making some of the above changes.

    Good Luck!

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    Tray Delivery Done Right!

    July 6th, 2012

    Are you looking for the final touch on providing your customers with their meal tray? The Optima RS cart is an innovative heated and refrigerated food cart developed to maintain hot and cold food temperatures. The design of the unique single tray system enables the delivery of plated meals on a one piece tray.

    Your staff have prepared the customers meal tray as requested. To ensure the customer receives their tray at the optimal food temperature they now place the tray into the Optima RS and began their route to deliver the tray. In some facilities this route can be long so to ensure the temperature of the food is appropriate a proper cart is a necessity to ensure customer satisfaction. You can even go that extra step as the cart will allow you to hold hot beverages that can be poured and served as you serve the customer their tray.

    For those sites that are small or have the insulated bulky trays that have to be stacked on carts and then delivered to your customers this is your solution. The hot and the cold won’t mix together compromising the food temperature and it’s an attractive way to deliver the meal tray to the customer.

    It’s quite Optimal!

    Optima RS Features & Benefits:

    • Low noise emissions
    • Made of 304 18/10 stainless steel and aluminium
    • 4 castors (2 swivel and 2 fixed) for ease of movement and turns
    • Magnetic latching doors with access to hot and/or cold sides of tray
    • Easy to use controls with automatic start/stop and audible alarm
    • Electrical connection to kitchen power to gain maximum heating and cooling capability
    • Electrical connection at patient ward service area for temperature maintenance
    • Removable side tray slides inside the unit to facilitate cleaning and maintenance
    • Divider wall can be disassembled for deep cleaning, repair, maintenance
    • Flat top to help transport other items to and from units
    • Side shelf and push handle
    • Mechanical/electrical side panel made of anti-static high impact thermoplastic.

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    Retherm or Baking 101?

    April 18th, 2012

    What is a retherm cart anyway? When I first started working at Burlodge Canada the world of Retherm Technology was introduced to me, my first thoughts were WOW, that’s some interesting pieces of equipment. As I worked with the equipment, I began to realize that this cart is just like an oven in many ways. It ensures that large quantities of food heats up to the appropriate temperature while ensuring a good quality outcome. It holds food hot and cold throughout the meal service distribution process, but I was pleasantly surprised to learn it can do more ……. it can actually cook.

    Food Services is always struggling to discover what we can do to make a patient in a hospital have the best food service experience possible. Coming from a home where my Italian mother is an excellent cook, it’s hard to have anything compare to the meals made with love from her. Knowing how I feel when I’m sick, you sometimes don’t want to eat anything or you want those comfort foods you ate as you were growing up. If you think about it that’s a hard pill for Food Service Directors and Managers to swallow, meaning they have a really hard task of pleasing the patient population in a Hospital when each person has different food memories. Freshly baked cookies are something that will take all my worries away, so I started experimenting with baked goods in our retherm equipment. It seemed a great place to start because I’ve noticed it’s hard for anyone to say “No thank you” to a freshly baked cookie.

    Looking at all types of cookies; I began with the frozen cookie dough (English Bay), and then the dry mix cookie dough (Quaker) and even refrigerated cookie dough. All types of cookie dough in the end produced a wonderful warm freshly baked cookie. My first attempts were in a bulk retherm system, below are some pictures.

    English Bay Frozen Cookie Dough:

    Quaker Dry Cookie Dough Mix:

    Since trying cookies I’ve baked brownies, biscuits and muffins. Then I progressed to actually trying to bake a cookie directly on a patient tray (English Bay frozen cookie dough ball) and then a cinnamon roll. (Refrigerated Pillsbury cinnamon rolls) See pictures below. Basically all you need to do is place a paper baking cup on the tray preferably in the corner and then place your frozen, refrigerated or made from scratch baked item in the middle of the cup. This can be placed on the tray as the meal tray is assembled and then it will bake during your site specific retherm cycle. The aroma of baking cookies and cinnamon buns is a wonderful smell to have in the hallways; it not only reminds people of home it also creates excitement as they anticipate their next meal.

    So if you look at a retherm cart and think all it can really do is heat large quantities of food and hold them hot and cold as their distributed to the patients you need to take a second look. Somewhere in a hospital around the world a patient just received their supper meal tray from a Burlodge retherm cart and directly on their tray a freshly baked cookie sits, it’s really just the beginning.

    More to follow in the coming months!

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    Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables!

    February 10th, 2012

    Research has shown that eating a generous amount of fruits and vegetables may prevent certain types of cancers, decrease the risk of obesity, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, lower blood pressure, decrease the risk of eye problems (cataract and macular degeneration) and digestion issues, and helps to control appetite.   I guess the old saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” actually has some truth!!

    A current European study looking at the links between diet and disease showed that dying from heart attacks (Ischemic Heart Disease), which causes reduced bloody supply to the heart, is decreased in those people who consume generous portions of fruits and vegetables.  Risks were reduced by 22% in people who consumed 8 or more portions of fruits and vegetables per day compared to people who ate 3 portions or less each day.  Of course other factors may play a role as well.  Usually people who are likely to eat the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables also tend to practice other healthy eating habits and lifestyle.

    In addition to this, other studies show that fruits and vegetables containing alpha-carotene help protect against cancers, diabetes type 2, and chronic lower respiratory disease by functioning as an antioxidant which helps to protect against the growth of cancer cells.  Yellow-orange and dark green vegetables are particularly high in alpha-carotene and help guard against lung cancer better than any other vegetable.  The catch is, you need to consume more fruits and vegetables to get higher blood levels of alpha-carotene… so eat up!!

    Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide:

    It is recommended that Canadians eat 8-10 servings of fruits and vegetables each day.  If you forget to eat them during the day, it is very hard to catch up at night.  This is why it is important to incorporate fruits and vegetables into every meal and at snack time to ensure you get the best benefits from their nutrients.

    You may be asking yourself, what is considered ONE serving?  Here are some examples:

    ½ cup of: broccoli, peas, carrots, berries, or tomatoes

    1 apple, a medium banana, orange, peach, pear, plum, a medium celery stick, or an ear of corn

    1 cup raw romaine lettuce

    *see the attached Food Guide for more examples of food servings.

    Fruits and vegetables are also a good source of carbohydrates, fibre, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, magnesium, potassium and folate.  To ensure you get plenty of different vitamins and minerals from your fruits and vegetables try to:

    • Choose at least one dark green vegetable each day (this includes broccoli, green peas, spinach, green beans, romaine lettuce, kale, turnip greens)
    • Choose at least one orange vegetable (sweet potato, squash, carrots, pumpkin, tangerines, apricots, mangoes)
    • Choose fresh fruits and vegetables rather than juice:  It takes many pieces of fruit to make one cup of juice.  Juice has high sugar content and does not fill us up.  Think about it- one cup of orange juice requires around 3 large oranges… normally, we do not sit down and eat 3 large oranges in one serving.  Eating one large orange will keep us fuller for longer than one cup of juice because it is a whole fruit and has fibre which helps keep us full.
    • Choose fruits and vegetables that are prepared with little or no added fats:  it is good to add a little bit of fat to your vegetables, whether it be low fat dip or olive oil, since this helps our bodies absorb the fat-soluble vitamins.  However, fat is high in calories and contributes to weight gain, so try to limit/portion the amount of fat added to your food.

    Tips to increase fruit and vegetable intake:

    To help you achieve 8-10 servings of fruits and vegetables each day, try the following tips:

    Breakfast: add some berries to your cereal or oatmeal, or make a fruit smoothie with low fat milk.  Try to add 2 servings of fruit at breakfast.

    Lunch:   try to include one vegetable serving by adding tomatoes and/or lettuce to your sandwiches or wraps, prepare carrot and pepper sticks as a side, have a low sodium vegetable soup, or eat a side salad.  If you eat out a lot, try to aim for the “Healthy Plate” model: ¼ of your plate protein (meat),   ¼ starch (potato, bread, pasta, rice), and ½ the plate vegetables (salad, veggie sticks etc).

    Midday snack:  have a fruit.  Tangerines, apples, bananas, or pears are easy, portable options.  Put a fruit bowl on your desk in your office.  This way, the fruit is in sight and is an easy snack.

    Dinner: try to include a minimum of 2 large vegetable servings.  Use dark leaf lettuce and romaine (which are higher in carotenes) rather than ice burg lettuce.  Try preparing quick cooking vegetables such as: kale, rapini, spinach, and green beans.  You can grill eggplant, zucchini, asparagus peppers and onions on the bbq, or if you are really strapped for time, prepare some frozen vegetables which take no preparation time at all.

    If preparing fruits and vegetables is just too time consuming and tedious for you, try purchasing ready to go, pre-washed, pre-portioned or packaged items (i.e. broccoli florets, carrot sticks, pre-washed salads), or buy a veggie platter and portion it out for the week.

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    The Ultimate Air Curtain

    February 3rd, 2012

    Air curtain refrigeration is a necessity in food service, particularly at the trayline. The common air curtain is typically a tall unit that has one door and can be quite noisy. As Burlodge is always on the cusp of innovation, we asked what if there was a smaller unit, easier to move, quiet, powerful, and had two doors – one at the front and one at the back to support replenishment while the trayline operates? That has been the inspiration for Alphacool.

    The background on the Alphacool begins with our popular Alphagen retherm system, which  Burlodge manufactured in the 1990’s and early 2000’s. This powerful, footprint friendly meal delivery system became a common tool in cook-chill cold plating meal service across the country as the system was designed with on-board air cooling throughout. When the system needed to reheat food, one half of the refrigeration would stop and that side of the trolley would heat up thereby regenerating the food. That food was served hot while the other side kept cold food cold. The Alphagen was made to act as a refrigerator first and a retherm unit second.

    As Burlodge continued to develop new technology (i.e. Novaflex and B-Pod) Alphagen clients started to switch over and Burlodge reclaimed the Alphagens. We reconditioned the units, certified them and continued to offer them to facilities who wanted a reliable, proven and affordable meal delivery system. Now, Burlodge has found a new way of using the Alphagen – as an air-cooled air curtain.

    The Alphacool revamps the Alphagen into a refrigerator only unit. New, quieter fans are placed in the unit, the evaporators are angled to drain condensate, which is captured below and evaporated. The operator side door when opened has an automatic switch that turns off the fans on one side of the unit to reduce noise and increase the air curtain flow of air across the opening. The system can be fitted with removable shelves or gravity fed shelving for lean tray assembly and improved ergonomics. Meanwhile, the rear door allows the air curtain to be refilled during operation, which means improved efficiency and no distractions at the trayline.

    The Alphacool is available from Burlodge at a price that competes with any air curtain on the market. It comes with a generous warranty, is CSA approved, and is a low maintenance unit. What’s more, as reconditioned and reused equipment Alphacool is another example of Burlodge taking an  environmentally sensible approach to its equipment rather than scrapping the unit and adding it to landfill. All in all, a worthy second life for our excellent Alphagens is giving our clients yet another aaffordable option to better run their operations. Now that’s Alphacool.

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    Stressed Out!

    December 9th, 2011

    Stress is an inevitable part of our lives, it’s sometimes good and sometimes bad.  It can cause us to be more efficient, or it can simply make us go crazy.  Let’s take a moment to discuss what stress is and how we can go about managing it.

    Stress- the double edged sword…

    To a certain degree, stress is needed in our lives.  Basically, stress is a burst of energy that can manifest in many different forms as a result of good or bad things/situations in daily life; for example, changing jobs, getting married, pressure, holiday planning, etc.  Good stress, such as going on vacation, can make a person feel energized and excited, whereas bad stress, such as being under pressure, can cause negative health effects.

    Moderate amounts of stress can actually help improve memory, make us more effective in performing duties, and may enhance heart function as well as immunities.  The trouble is when we are unable to control stress  and the short term buzz becomes chronic, long term stress that affects our lives.  When stress hormones remain in our system longer than 24 hours, negative effects can start to occur in our body. For example, long term emotional stress can cause high blood pressure, exhaustion, depression, and heart disease.

    The Stress Response:

    When our body experiences stress, it goes through a series of responses in three stages.  Let’s take a closer look at what unfolds during a bout of stress…

    Stage 1: Mobilizing Energy

    Both good and bad episodes of stress, whether psychological or physical, cause the body to release stress hormones called cortisol, norepinephrine, and epinephrine (adrenaline).  These hormones cause the heart to beat faster, our senses to sharpen, blood pressure to rise, and the release of blood glucose all to help us get ready for a “fight or flight” response.  Essentially, this reaction is to help us survive.  The chemicals released produce a sudden burst of energy in our body which helps us to act.

    Symptoms of the Mobilizing Energy Stage: rapid breathing, increase heart rate, sweating, decreased digestion, butterflies, indigestion

    Stage 2: Consuming Energy Stores

    In this stage, the body starts to release fats and sugars.  Many people turn to coffee, alcohol, and cigarettes as a short term fix to try to numb the feelings of anxiety and fatigue.  People may also experience more negative thinking and memory loss, and may get the flu more often.

     Symptoms of this stage: feeling driven, feeling anxiety and pressure, exhaustion, tiredness, fatigue (which leads to increased smoking, alcohol and coffee consumption), colds and flues, memory loss

    Stage 3: Draining Energy Stores

    The body’s need for energy in this stage increases to a point that is greater than the body is able to provide.  If stress is not managed, you may experience personality changes, insomnia, and errors in judgment.  In this stage, there is an increased risk of heart disease and mental illness.

     Symptoms of this stage: ulcers, heart disease (high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc), insomnia, personality changes, errors in judgment, mental illness

    What can we do?

    Stress is a matter of perception. To some, roller coasters are torture, but to others they are a thrill.  To some, stress makes them meet deadlines, but to others it fogs their mind.  The goal is not to get rid of stress altogether; rather, the aim is to manage stress and channel it productively.  After all, stress is unavoidable and part of our “fight or flight” makeup; you never know when you’ll be chased by an animal and need to respond!

    When we experience stress, the best thing to do is identify the stressors and use coping techniques.  Try to be aware of what things/events/situations make you feel stressed.  These are your “triggers,”   whether it be traffic jams, finances, children, rude people etc, know what makes you tick!

    Stress Management Techniques:

    After you determine your triggers, try some coping techniques to reduce the bad effects of the stressors.  Here are some approaches to try:

    • TALK about your stress to friends, colleagues, or family members.  Verbalizing your emotions can actually release some stress.  You never know, people may be able to offer you some suggestions/solutions that may work.
    • PHYSICAL ACTIVITY – this is a fantastic stress reducer!  Go for walks, go for a run, stretch your whole body.  Exercise makes the body and brain more resilient to stress and releases endorphins, a natural euphoric chemical that is like a morphine substance originating naturally in the body.  This neurotransmitter produces feelings of well-being.
    • FIND A HOBBY – take your mind off stress by playing sports, reading, painting etc.  Take a holiday from your problems!
    • BE REALSITIC, BE POSITIVE! – Try not to be hard on yourself.  Refrain from talking/thinking negative about yourself.  Steer clear from “I can’t, won’t, should, must” talk.
    • AVOID PROCRASTINATING – Keep a schedule and always include your hobbies and leisure activities to keep life interesting
    • CHANTING MANTRAS – this may not be the best option during a meeting… do this on your own time!
    • BREATHING TECHNIQUES – consciously try to control your breathing.  Here are a couple of breathing exercises to try:

    1)      Exhalation Breathing Technique:

    a)      Lie on your back, arms to your side

    b)      As you breathe in, raise your arms to the ceiling, and then move them all the way up and over your head to the floor while exhaling

    c)       Reverse the order – continue to do this several times.  After doing this a few times, without moving your arms, inhale and exhale slowly.

    2)      Deep Breathing Exercise:

    a)      Slowly inhale through your nose

    b)      Expand your abdomen before you allow air into your lungs

    c)       When exhaling, reverse the process

    d)      Repeat for 3-5mins

    • STRETCH!!

    1)       Exhale into the stretch, and inhale when you release

    2)      Breathe deeply and slowly, and DO NOT hold your breath

    3)      Optional: close your eyes when stretching to connect with your body

    • GO FOR A WALK – link this with your B-fit physical activity goals!
    • WATCH YOUR DIET – caffeine, alcohol, fats, sugar, and tobacco affect the way your body copes with stress.  Try eating a balanced diet of whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and protein
    • Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals – make sure you are realistic in your goals.  Unrealistic goals add to your stress level and make you feel incapable.  Make sure your goal is Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-limited.
    • LAUGH!! – Laughter is a mechanism your body uses for natural stress relief.  Rent a good comedy, read the comics, or talk with the funniest friend or colleague you know!


    – On your own, practice some coping techniques like deep breathing exercises in your office or whole body stretching before, during, or after work.

    – If you know a funny joke, share it with everyone at lunch time . . . Get everyone laughing!

    Keep trying to be-merry and B-fit!

    Photo Credit: bottled_void via Compfight cc

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    The New RTS CT (Ready To Serve Carbon Tech)

    October 7th, 2011

    Take the ingredients of the global innovation to serve hot food hot and cold food cold called the RTS and add some carbon fibre to lighten the load, powerful refrigeration and boosting capability, improved handling, new smart programming, and new features to facilitate cleaning and storage …. now say hello to the Ready To Serve Carbon-Tech from Burlodge.

    Liaison Chaude (Hot Line) or Cook Chill (Cold Plating), the RTS-CT can be manufactured to support any meal assembly processes. For liaison chaude the RTS-CT has built-in boosting capability so you are assured of hot food outcomes while the on-board active chilling of cold food enhances the dining experience. In cook chill applications, the RTS-CT can be fitted with single or double refrigeration for holding of cold foods in advance of reheating. Moreover, the RTS-CT can regenerate foods on a single tray inside a cold room or within an ambient space such as a kitchen or pantry. Many options are available for the RTS-CT in all its applications. Now you are Ready to Serve your clientele with the most modern technology and flexible solution.

    When you demand hot food hot and cold food cold and you want a lightweight and multipurpose trolley, Ready to Serve Carbon-Tech (RTS-CT) is the solution.

    The Ready To Serve-CT – Burlodge Manufacturing Excellence for the 21st Century

    The Ready To Serve-Carbon Tech  (RTS-CT) is equipment that defines the high standards today’s institutional food service professionals demand. Developed to handle high capacity tray preparation, boosting or regeneration, and the transportation of hot and cold meals, the RTS-CT incorporates leading technology and manoeuvrability, ensuring it is both easy to learn and operate.

    The unit combines efficiency, style and durability, while featuring an ergonomic design that promotes safety in all aspects of its function.


    The design of the RTS-CT reflects our experience with and understanding of the food service profession. The use of carbon fibre in place of stainless steel doors is a revolutionary new standard and demonstrates a commitment to improving worker health and safety through the use of lightweight yet durable materials, and excellence in temperature insulation. The Ready To Serve’s unique tray holding design and the divider wall separates hot and cold sides of the tray without compromising consistent temperature levels throughout. Whether using large style (575mm x 325mm) or smaller size (530mm x 325mm) flat trays, they slide securely into and out of the divider wall with minimal effort, and can be personalized as required. As well, its small footprint minimizes space concerns and eases movement of the unit. Washing of the RTS-CT is especially effortless.

    It can withstand jet or hose washing inside and out while the divider wall can be removed completely for more thorough cleaning or maintenance details. As an enhancement, an optional folding clearing shelf can be installed which can also accommodate a garbage holder.


    Our integrated technology on the RTS-CT empowers users with simple control systems and rapid access to key information. In simplifying the functionality of the RTS-CT and equipping it with smart technology, staff can better focus on delivery, service and support. Some of the program functions on the RTS-CT include:

    • On and Off touch pads

    • Three temperature holding cycles with double programming of the hot and cold sides of the RTS CT

    • Alternate reading of the temperatures in the hot and cold cavities of the trolley

    • Automatic timer (programmable start time)

    • Audible alarm at the end of a cycle

    • Ventilation cycle

    • Sleep Mode (energy saving while not in use)

    • Food probing linked to menu items

    • Transmission of data for HACCP tracking


    Professional food service depends on excellent logistics, preparation and delivery, and at Burlodge we’ve designed the RTS-CT to consistently uphold those standards while handling the daily demands placed upon this equipment.  Keeping hot food hot and cold food cold may seem fundamental, but it’s important to note the quality and consistency of the heat/chill function within RTS CT on the same service tray. Our thermo-convection design ensures the heating and sustained holding of hot food by circulating hot air throughout the oven side of the unit. The cold side uses a forced air circulation system so items remain perfectly refrigerated.

    Adaptability is also a great feature of the RTS-CT. With two doors that fold back and open, operators have easy access to both sides of the cart as well as both the hot and cold components on the service tray. As well, any type of dishware can be used, including china, high heat plastics, single use, aluminum or high temperature paper products. Structurally, the RTS-CT is welded inside and out using 304 34 18/10 stainless steel. The vertical air condenser is hidden and does not protrude into the interior, and condensation is evaporated through air flux. Bumpers around the base of the cart protect the RTS-CT and help extend its lifespan.

    Quality Construction

    • stainless steel interior and chassis
    •  top and side panels anti-static high impact thermoplastic
    • anti-microbial door latch
    • high density injected insulation throughout
    • wrap around bumper
    • jet washable inside and out

    Human Factor Friendly

    • 4 vertical handles
    • optional horizontal handle add-on
    • 15% lighter than previous RTS model
    • easy to maneuver
    • low noise emission
    • removable tray rack cassette optional for easy distribution

    Integral Food Safety

    • anti-bacterial door latch
    • jet washable inside and out – rated IP 55
    • water capture system and foot pedal drain release
    • removable ventilation panels (no tools required)
    • disassemble centre wall with no tools
    • frame gaskets easily removed and replaced by hand

    The new design of the RTS-CT (Ready to Service-Carbon Tech) has a new high tech exterior design which looks very attractive.  The new light weight doors are constructed of carbon fibre which is extremely durable.  Also, the new handle design is more ergonomically friendly allowing operators of different height to comfortably handle and manoeuvre the cart.

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    apetito Takes a Fresh Approach to Frozen

    September 23rd, 2011

    Sometimes, it takes a thoroughly fresh approach to the accepted norm in order to change not just perceptions, but in this case, tastes. That’s the innovative thinking behind apetito’s unique frozen meal program, a food service initiative that aims to strengthen the patient-focused food options in hospitals by proposing more flexible and cost effective measures.

    “As any chef will tell you, a meal is at its freshest the moment it has been prepared. That’s when we freeze it,” says Director of Marketing, Nigel Richards. The benefits of working with a frozen product means far safer product. It’s easier for food professionals to handle, has a longer shelf life, reduces food waste and provides a consistency of food quality that food service managers are always trying to maintain.

    Turning Food Service on Its Head

    One of the unique features regarding apetito’s frozen food program is that they are prepared upside down. This includes a range of complete meals in a specially commissioned round multi-purpose tray. Says Richards, “The tray and its matching white china plate make it really easy to present the meals attractively and on-demand, just by making a ‘flip’ before serving.”

    This take on preparing frozen food is particularly suited to hospital units because it allows greater flexibility during service time. As well, with food service operations looking to minimize waste, improve efficiencies and give patients an improved level of choice as close to meal time as possible, the Apetito approach clearly makes good sense. It’s a readily scalable approach to food service and, most importantly, a cost effective means of delivering excellent quality.

    Burlodge Warms to the Relationship

     apetito chef David Burnett has created a wide range of recipes that will appeal to varied diets. The company has made sure to develop a mix of traditional meals and ethnically-inspired favourites that can be rethermalized in a range of different equipment. It particularly helps that Burlodge has developed equipment that works hand-in-hand with apetito’s style of preparation.

    “Without a doubt, the best result by far is achieved with the new Burlodge Simple Oven, as it offers the ability to cook 16 meals in just 16 minutes, from frozen.   This is a real breakthrough as the cooking time in conventional equipment is closer to an hour,” enthuses Richards.

     Just as apetito proposes original thinking around meal preparation, Burlodge is excited about the development of its Simple Oven. It’s a combi oven which features a unique heating system designed to provide greater heat concentration. The difference is that rather than using a forced steam approach with an on-board pressure system, the Simple Oven adds moisture to the convection rethermalization process by employing water droplets inside the cavity of the oven. This water is immediately turned
    into vapour, which results in excellent food quality when cooking with frozen foods. It’s remarkably simple to understand, operate and clean.

     Apetito’s range of products have all been developed to have the same cooking time, so everything in the oven is loaded together and is ready at the same time. The two companies have also extensively tested the meals heating to order (on-demand) from frozen in other Burlodge equipment such as Novaflex, B-Pod, and Multigen giving truly flexible options.

    Together, apetito and Burlodge represent those companies that will thrive in today’s demanding food service sector by not just anticipating what hospitals and other large scale institutions require when it comes to food service, but by defining the trends that will appeal most to catering managers and those that they serve. Focusing on speed and savings while enhancing satisfaction will go a long way to ensuring that innovative companies like these will be leading the way for years to come.

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    Serving Up Satisfaction!

    September 9th, 2011

    For many hospitals and health centres there’s been a steady of growth of single use dishware over the past decade. The increased use can be attributed to stringent standards around infection rates, but also around the improved quality of products available on the market. Helping to redefine this category is Burlodge’s Eversio line of disposable dishware, a fully compostable, chemical free and recyclable product line that is proving to be of great benefit to catering services for so many reasons.

    Made from 100% sugar cane fibre, Burlodge’s Eversio not only meets the environmental standards that health centres want to promote, but for Nutrition Services Leader at Rouge Valley Health System Karen Chang, it is proving better for staff, patients and operations all around.

    Karen is responsible for overseeing all meal assembly and production as well as the food purchasing for both the Rouge Valley Centenary location and Rouge Valley Ajax & Pickering. She manages a staff of approximately 40 people and between the two sites, her operation prepares upwards of 400 trays per meal.

    Early Adopter

    The Rouge Valley Health System had originally opted for single use dishware in 2003, so they were familiar with its use. At the time, the hospital had been considering strategies for better managing infection control, and it didn’t take long to convince Karen Chang and her team that there was no looking back. “We were probably the first ones using the Burlodge disposable products in Toronto. At that time it was a specially designed Stoneware style dish, lid, and bowl made by Dixie for Burlodge and right away we knew single use was here to stay,” recalls Chang.

    As well, the fact that the SARS crisis was very much in the public eye made the decision to stay with single use all that much simpler. “With the increased focus on infection control within the units, single serve dishware has been great for us,” says Karen.

    The Opportunity

    In 2009 Burlodge was notified that Dixie would no longer produce Stoneware disposables and so it was time to find a replacement. “With every challenge there is an opportunity,” says Paul Gauntley, President of Burlodge Canada, and so Burlodge searched for a line of single use wares that would be just as appealing to the eye but more healthy for the planet. As stoneware was going to landfill, Burlodge felt it was extremely important to find a ‘green’ solution. This was especially true since the company had recently implemented its B-Green Program, an environmental initiative for the company and its products.

    Finding the right supplier involved factoring in a number of key considerations. Notes Gauntley, “Healthcare foodservice needs very specific traywares that take up little space on the tray and that are just the right height to fit between trays as they slide into a delivery rack.” We found a manufacturer who was willing to custom build what we needed.” Hence, Eversio was born – a fine balance of good looks, functionality, and an environmentally friendly outcome.

    When the opportunity arose for Rouge Valley to try the new Eversio dishware in 2010, Karen Chang and her team were willing participants. The prospect of using fully compostable materials was a definite plus, but given that many of the health centre’s staff were long term employees, the ergonomic advantages had an immediate impact.

    “Our staff is on average a bit older here, so they noticed how much easier it was to carry the trays with lightweight disposable dishes compared to traditional china. This was especially true when pushing the carts filled with trays.”

    Naturally, the line of dishware also met the infection control standards at the hospital, which is an ever-growing issue in the sector. Says Karen, “Even the cutlery is packaged in a hygienic bag so we don’t have to touch it.”

    The Rewards of Organic Waste

    The most prominent advantage is the compostable quality of the product line. This helps Rouge Valley promote a stronger recycling program while it works toward a drop in the amount of waste that it previously had to pay to remove. Staff are not straining to move heavy loads of waste either. With Eversio in use, the hospital food service staff simply wash trays and cups (soon the cup will be a high heat friendly recyclable cup). The rest is sorted to recycling with the majority of tray waste going to an organic waste program. Then there are the associated cost reductions associated with the dishroom. Now there is hardly the demand placed upon the dishwashing equipment, so it extends the lifespan of the hardware. When Karen had to source a new machine, she did not have to spend additional funds on a heavy duty model. There’s also a reduction in the amount of water used to clean traditional china. The chemical usage and related costs are diminished and there are savings on associated energy expenses.

    This is a significant shift for staff as well, as less reliance on the dishroom meant employees could be redeployed elsewhere. Again, with many long term employees on staff, the elimination of heavy lifting, repetitive movements and other ergonomic concerns all contributed to improving the operation’s bottom line.

    Advantage, Eversio

    With all the cost benefits and environmental advantages that Eversio brings, Karen is also quick to point out that one of the most prominent features is that it’s an attractive, clean looking product. “When staff saw it for the first time they were impressed because it looks so good. Food looks even more presentable on it.” Paul Gauntley has been pleased with the results so far. “We tested the Eversio products at Rouge and redeveloped the product until we got it right and thanks to their expertise we now have a full line up of products specially designed for healthcare.” So, are you ready to sample Eversio disposable dishware?

    Contact Burlodge to discuss how your operation might be ready to go single-serve Eversio today.

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