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B&S Commercial Kitchens

An efficient kitchen allows the chef to prepare a meal quickly and easily. B&S Commercial Kitchens has been making quality commercial kitchen products for over fifty years. This Melbourne based company is known Australia wide and distributes throughout Australia as well as export.

In essence, in a quality commercial kitchen, the appliances must work as hard as the chef! For this to happen, the equipment needs to be of top quality and to boast superior performance as compared to regular kitchen equipment. The founder of B&S Commercial Kitchens recognised a need for top notch equipment in 1956 when he started creating pots and pans for customers in a small laneway in Melbourne. Not too long after the business began, an offer came along from a fish and chips shop for him to fabricate a quality deep fat fryer. From there, the company grew into what it is today.

According to Dean Skalistis, the Director of B&S Commercial Kitchens, “We went from deep fat fryers to grill and toaster units, which were the cornerstone of fish and chips shops back then. It wasn’t until the mid to late seventies that we started to develop Asian ranges, because the Asian market started to gain a bit of momentum.”

The company then began developing other appliances for the Asian market: wok cookers, steamers, noodle cookers, cheung fung steamers, HI-PAC wok cookers, and stock pots. From there, B&S developed its European range of appliances both standard and custom. Continuous innovation and brainstorming has kept the company offering products with a point of difference since its inception.

B&S Commercial Kitchens has supplied kitchen appliances to some of the finest establishments in Australia, from major casino complexes in Melbourne, Sydney and Perth to hotels such as the Hilton, Shangri-la, Hyatt Regency and the Langham. The company has also done work for numerous franchises throughout Australia.

“We’ve also exported out of Australia to Dubai, Qatar, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong-Kong – just to name a few,” says Dean.

One of the company’s key strengths is that it can manufacture custom designed cooking appliances. “We can pretty much make anything depending on what the customer’s requirements are, so we have real flexibility in that regard.”

As a result of this flexibility, B&S Commercial Kitchens has been nominated for several awards, including Exporter of the Year, and ultimately, the company would like to see its appliances all over the world in fine dining restaurants. Exporting is one thing, but developing the business within the Australian market requires different tactics. To do this, B&S is looking into diversifying and developing new concepts.

Currently the company is undertaking an innovation program that has been developed so that B&S can better meet the needs of Australia’s increasingly multicultural society. Different restaurants cook different types of food from different areas of the world and may require special appliances. You wouldn’t want to be a mechanic without the proper wrench and the same thing goes for the food industry.

Dean explains that, “With Australia being quite a multicultural society, we’re combining Asian appliances with European appliances and looking at forming a better kitchen that can accommodate the various cuisines.”

Indeed, B&S Commercial Kitchens was the first company to introduce a waterless wok range onto the market and it considers this quite an achievement. From there came waterless steamers and waterless stock pots. These items really helped propel the company to where it is today. In a country that is actually the driest on the earth, using less water is always a good thing; the company’s waterless range uses substantially less water than conventional units, saving restaurateurs money and using less of Australia’s precious water supply.

The company has recently applied for a patent for its new super wok system, which comprises an extremely energy efficient forced air burner that is used in a lot of high turnover restaurants. “We’re really, really proud of the design that we’ve come up with for that,” says Dean. The company has come up with its own type of ignition system, located in a more remote position away from the main burner. “It’s actually far more reliable that we had originally anticipated,” says Dean, explaining that its location means that it doesn’t get burned or caked with debris. “We are also working on a couple of other projects in terms of innovation as well.”

Energy efficiency is something that becoming increasingly important worldwide and all of the appliances found at B&S Commercial Kitchens have been developed for maximum efficiency and efficacy. To be sure, innovation is a key part of B&S Commercial Kitchens and the company is working on improving its production processes as well as general business processes. “We are making things as efficient as possible so that we can remain as sustainable as possible,” Dean explains.

Part of making things more efficient is using the experiences of staff members who have been with the business for a long time. A member of the staff that has seen the company through various stages can often point out a flaw in a process or a solution to it. Many staff members have been with the company over fifteen or, in some cases, as many as twenty-five years – a tribute to how well the business treats its employees.

Offering extended warranties is another way that the company keeps its customers happy with the products that they have chosen. B&S also has an emergency backup service that is available seven days a week and is developing a customer service package for its existing customers to cover issues that other manufacturers don’t typically cover.

“There is quite a difference within our customer service area, because we have identified it as such,” says Dean. “We strive to have better customer service than any of our competitors. We think that’s truly important and we enjoy being there for our clients.” The company also offers training services for any appliance that it has manufactured, ensuring that the items will always be working properly and that they will be used to the best of their potential.

B&S has been able to create a niche market for its products as there is nothing like a custom kitchen appliance – and B&S is truly one of a kind as well. All its products are Australian made and that’s an aspect of the business that the company wants to keep. It’s a clear point of difference between B&S’s product range and the majority of the other commercial kitchen appliance suppliers that carry imported products.

As well as being a purely Australian company, B&S Commercial Kitchens is also a family business that has been passed down through two generations. With the ability to manufacture virtually anything that is needed in a kitchen to whatever specification may be needed, and with strong systems and processes to back its products up, this company is a unique find for anyone looking to build a quality commercial kitchen.

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June 19, 2018, 8:19 PM AEST