Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Chefs use Deutsche Telekom IoT services to improve food quality

Steve Rogerson
July 2, 2019



Chefs at the new Krønasår hotel in the German town of Rust are using IoT services from Deutsche Telekom to improve the quality of the food and ensure it is prepared hygienically.
 
Any good head chef has to do more than prepare tasty meals. The responsibilities of the job are much broader. Aside from good flavour, their guests expect high-quality ingredients. And legislators require kitchens to observe and document hygiene standards strictly. The restaurants’ operators want a sustainable use of resources.
 
Chefs are now getting help from the IoT. Deutsche Telekom’s Check Cloud service digitalises quality-control procedures and documents the results seamlessly and in real time. It also provides data on systems and how well they are working. It can tell us, for example, whether cold storage rooms are working as they should.
 
The Europa-Park theme park and resort in Rust is now using this in operations in the gastronomic services at the four-star Krønasår hotel.
 
Hygiene is the be all and end all in the kitchen. As a rule of thumb, the broader the range of gastronomic offerings, the more demanding the requirements. In Germany, the rules on food safety are guided by the world-wide HACCP (hazard analysis and critical points) approach to hygiene.
 
What it means is that responsible people are required to carry out checks at critical points, fully documenting the results of those checks. What temperature was the chicken breast on delivery, for example? And at what temperature are they stored in the refrigerated warehouse? Are the containers they are stored in cleaned properly after use? Many restaurants use handwritten logs or Excel spreadsheets to make such checks. 
 
But the job can be done more easily, faster and more reliably using the Check Cloud bundle to help businesses carry out and document their check routines. Check Cloud is based on Deutsche Telekom’s Goods Compliance offering, which the company has adapted to deal with the specific needs of the food and restaurant industries.
 
“We are working with the Max Maier Group, taking advantage of their international experience in equipping commercial kitchens,” said Rami Avidan, who is responsible for IoT business at Deutsche Telekom’s corporate customer arm T-Systems. “Through this partnership, we have pooled expertise from both sectors in Check Cloud.”
 
Using fixed sensors, hand-held measuring devices and checklists, kitchen staff record the necessary data, including food temperatures. And they can do so at whatever control point they select. All data then flow via the cloud into a clearly structured online portal, where they are processed for display and documentation. The end result is that the chef can see at a glance that everything is as it should be. And if anything goes wrong, the system alerts them to the problem.
 
The IoT system gives the entire food processing chain transparency from goods delivery through storage and food preparation all the way to the food counter. It lets chefs prove that they conform to all regulations, leaving no gaps. As an added benefit, they receive information from the system in real time on the condition of their foodstuffs. This ensures the quality of the food they produce and allows them to operate with less waste.
 
“We don’t cut any corners when it comes to quality,” said Arne Weimann, deputy director of food and beverage at Europa-Park hotels. “That principle applies to our amusement parks and hotels as much as it does to our restaurants. The digital transformation helps us to achieve the goals we set ourselves and to conform to official regulations. Check Cloud impressed us both in terms of its functions and in relation to data security.”
 
The system is being used in the gastronomic services provided at Krønasår, the four-star hotel Europa-Park opened in May. It has two restaurants and one café, and space for 1300 guests at any one time.