Revised: September 22, 2010

For your small business to be competitive, you have to
extract maximum value from every dollar you spend.
Your energy bill may not be large compared to labour
and product but worthwhile savings can be made if you
purchase the right equipment and operate it efficiently. The
basic principles of energy management can be applied to
the cooking needs of any small business operation:
Determine exactly what the equipment has to do
Review your existing operation or get the best advice
you can about a new venture. When deciding on
cooking capacity, you should take variations in demand
into account. Consider smaller appliances to help meet
peak load times instead of having one large appliance
under-utilised and wasting energy for most of the day.
Select the most energy efficient option to deliver the
required performance.
Pay particular attention to features or options such as
timers and thermostats that can automate operations for
optimum results. Take into account running costs when
making your decision — if a more efficient model has a
higher purchase price, energy savings will usually pay for
it. Investigate newer cooking technologies.
Operate and maintain the equipment to ensure
optimum performance.
Educate your staff to use equipment efficiently. Pay
particular attention to cleaning routines to ensure your
equipment always works at peak efficiency. Good maintenance is critical — depending on use, your
cooking equipment should be serviced twice a year.
This should include recalibration of ovens and any other
equipment controlled by thermostats.
Defining Requirements
The purpose of a cooking appliance is to heat food to
the required temperature determined by the cooking
style — which can range from high temperature, rapid
stir-frying to low temperature, slow stewing. Food warmers
must hold cooked food at a safe temperature if there is a
delay in serving. You need to be aware of new food safety
standards being adopted by the Australia New Zealand
Food Standards Council. This sets out requirements for
general food safety programs in any food business.
Gas burners are especially suitable for rapid, high
temperature cooking and are available in different styles
— open ring, multiple and wok burners, and solid tops.
Energy Saving Tips
Use the appropriate size of pan and burner so the flame
stays under the pan, not licking up the sides.
Turn the burner off when it’s not needed. The key feature
of a gas burner is that heat is available immediately.
Cover saucepans to retain heat.
Cooking is faster and uses less energy.
Ensure burners, jets, and controls are
regularly serviced.

By Govt of SA