Display refrigeration cases hold and preserve items at low temperatures while providing clear visibility of the products. Cafes, bakeries and convenience stores are just some businesses that use glass doors and refrigerated cabinets to showcase their best products safely, clearly and attractively.
Refrigerated display cabinets are ideal for storing fresh food items or cold drinks safely whilst merchandising the products attractively to consumers to increase sales. In addition, display refrigerators provide customers with the opportunity to look at what's for sale and choose the items they want at their leisure, so they're ideal for a self-service setting. Various types of refrigerated display cases are available to meet the requirements of different businesses.
Vertical refrigerated display cases are upright chiller cabinets with the option of single, double or triple clear glass doors. Depending on the capacity, they can hold numerous items while allowing consumers to see and retrieve the products they want easily. You often see sizeable vertical chiller cabinets in supermarkets, shops, restaurants, bars and commercial kitchens. In contrast, small under-counter upright display refrigerators are perfect for small spaces, such as bars.
Horizontal refrigerated display cases are ideal for displaying cakes, dairy products, salads and sandwiches and are designed to fit neatly on a countertop. They are suitable for bakeries, patisseries, cafes and canteens.
Accurate temperature control for temperature-sensitive food items
Domestic refrigerators typically offer a universal solution for keeping food cool. This one-size-fits-all approach is not appropriate for commercial food supply establishments. The requirements and standards for chilled food are higher in a shop or restaurant than in a simple domestic kitchen.
Temperature ranges explained
Commercial refrigerated display cases are designed to maintain consistent temperatures. Display refrigerators typically range from -1˚C and 10˚C while display freezers will maintain temperatures between -10°C and -25°C. These temperature ranges keep food products safe and meet standard environmental health regulations.
In food retail, various types of food must be stored and displayed at different temperatures, and it's essential to maintain the correct range for each. Doing this maintains the product's taste and texture and keeps it looking appealing to customers. Finally, keeping food products at the right temperature ensures your food is safe. If food such as meats, seafood, cheeses or patisserie were to spoil and make customers ill, it would be disastrous for the reputation of your business and your customers' health.
Please note: Refrigerated display cabinets are designed to keep food products cold, not to cool down hot food to a safe holding temperature. The temperature must be maintained between -2 °C and 5 °C, depending on the type of food; otherwise, food safety will be compromised.
For example, a refrigerated display case for displaying seafood such as caviar in a hotel or restaurant should be kept at -2 to 2 °C. On the other hand, a countertop refrigerated display case for drinks should provide a temperature of between 2 and 8 °C . these types of refrigerated display cases are ideal for selling pre-packaged beverages such as sodas, beers and juices in high-traffic areas where they will be restocked frequently.
Understanding food safety temperatures
Commercial food handlers and operators are responsible for storing food safely. The cold holding temperature of a refrigerated display case should be 5°C or below. This temperature prevents the growth of dangerous pathogens and bacteria, which is especially important if you are supplying temperature-sensitive foods such as seafood, cream, milk, egg dishes, meats and cheeses.
Don't overfill the chiller cabinet as if it's too crowded, the air can't circulate, and it will not perform as effectively. Check the temperature of your refrigerated display regularly using a fridge thermometer.
Features of a refrigerated display case
Refrigerated display cabinets are a broad category encompassing under-counter, countertop and free-standing, upright models. Glass door vertical cabinets are also favoured by chefs in busy commercial kitchens, where they are perfect for cold food storage and quick and easy retrieval of items. Glass door refrigerator display cases are also used in restaurants and canteens, and also in food service operations in supermarkets, offices, hotels, hospitals, canteens and stadiums.
When it comes to merchandising your products, open display cases offer more customer convenience than closed glass-door models because they create no barrier between customers and products. On the other hand, closed refrigerated display cases are more energy efficient.
Options for temperature monitoring include electronic controllers for reliability, thermometers, defrost timers and high-temperature alert alarms.
Other features to consider include the interior lighting, shelves, self-closing doors, automatic condensation evaporation and castors or legs.
Some models are available with security covers. These securely lock open-front display refrigerators when the establishment is unattended and save money by enhancing the efficiency of the refrigeration system.