Foodservice equipment prices will continue to rise for the foreseeable future while new equipment will take longer to arrive, the Foodservice Equipment Association (FEA) has warned.
Talking about increasing material costs, Keith warren, chief executive of FEA, comments: “Stainless steel prices had already risen by between 17 and 33% recently. The price is going to rise further with the dramatic increases in the cost of the alloys used in stainless steel for foodservice appliances, such as nickel and molybdenum. The cost of nickel rose from $25,000 a tonne to $100,000 a tonne in just two days! Meanwhile energy and employment costs are increasing, along with inflation. And while the availability of components is more stable and is improving, they are still on extended order times.
“Sadly, these are global issues – there is nowhere else to go to get equipment.”
Alongside price pressures and component delays, manufacturers and importers are having to deal with staff shortages and the complications of Brexit.
FEA advises against purchasing equipment that’s not up to spec simply because it’s available. “It won’t meet the need and, in a short time, it’ll need replacing,” says Warren. “Worst case scenario, an under-specced appliance could compromise safety of staff and customers.”
The organisation recommends placing orders for new equipment as soon as it is needed and looking after existing equipment in order to maximise its service life and ensure it is running as efficiently as possible. This includes staff training, so that appliances are maintained day-to-day, and regular servicing by qualified engineers.
In addition, it suggests talking to suppliers and manufacturers to see if they offer staff training and online resources, such as ‘how to’ videos, so staff can learn about maintenance and cleaning tasks.