Organized tote storage can be a great and efficient storage solution for any food service operation. Totes are a great way to keep supplies separate and well organized in backroom storage. However, did you know that certain environmental factors can affect the amount of time your totes last? It's true! One of the most significant factors is the type of shelving you use to store your tote boxes. Here are a few reasons to consider plastic shelving for tote storage.
Disadvantages of Other Options
Wire shelving is durable and is a pretty popular choice when a storage area is in a generally dry area. However, wire shelves can take a toll on your plastic totes and force you to dish out extra money to replace them. The wire is rough and can scratch totes as you try and pull them out to access supplies; over time, this can break them down and force you to buy replacements. Wire can also be inconvenient for the fast- paced kitchen environment. A wire shelf is not a smooth surface, so it makes sliding and accessing the totes a little more complicated. Totes can get caught, tipped, and damaged by the front of wire shelves.
Totes are a great way to store ingredients, gloves/ hairnets, chaffing dishes, and other materials. Over time, some of these materials can take a toll on wire shelving and cause corrosion. This is especially true when the item being stored has a significant salt or acidic content. These materials breakdown metal, and can cause rusting on units where they are stored. Furthermore, replacing the shelving units can be costly and time- consuming if corrosion does occur.
One conventional storage solution used for tote storage is epoxy coated shelving. Epoxy is waterproof, easier to clean, and overall a good choice in any food service environment. This makes it a common choice for tote storage, however, totes can cause damage to these shelving units. Totes can break the epoxy seal and leave the metal frame of the shelf and leave the unit open to corrosion. Epoxy just can't hold up with the constant movement of totes.
Benefits of Plastic
1. Easy to access
Plastic shelving is a smooth surface that makes it easy to slide totes around, on, and off shelving units. The flat surface of plastic shelving is a much safer surface to store totes, and with many totes costing close to $100, it is crucial that they are kept intact.
2. Easy to Clean
Anywhere in a food service institution, there is bound to be messes. Plastic shelving mats can be placed right in the dishwasher for an easy clean. Also, because of the materials used to make the unit you don't have to worry about corrosion.