How to Organize a Commercial Restaurant Refrigerator

Restaurant equipment need clear systems to be used efficiently. One of the most important pieces of restaurant equipment is a commercial refrigerator. And just as with everything else, this appliance needs to function productively. Following the tips in this article, your commercial restaurant refrigerator will be organized to maximize efficiency.


Purchasing proper shelving for the inside of a commercial refrigerator is important. You need shelves that will hold up to a lot of use and be easy to clean. Epoxy-coated shelving is wise because it will stand up to necessary frequent cleaning. Metal grate shelving is ideal because it will maximize airflow to the items you're storing. It's also crucial that the bottom shelf be at least six inches away from the ground. This is will give sufficient airflow and it will be easier to clean spills underneath the shelves.


The air is what keeps the food in a commercial fridge cold. The cold air needs to be able to circulate the items. Space items out so that they can get air exposure on all sides. Even though this may seem counter-productive, the products will stay usable for longer.



When it comes to storing the items in your fridge, the first thing you should know is to always keep raw meat on the bottom shelf. This is because if meat juices or marinades were to drip at all, they would cross-contaminate the other food and the other food would then need to be thrown away. If the meat is stored on the lowest shelves it will prevent this from happening, and make it easier to clean up any potential spills.


Store fresh produce away from fans and ventilation. Even if you are careful to use produce quickly, it's still important that it's not close to the fans. Fans in commercial refrigerators are powerful and can easily damage produce, causing it to go bad. The best place for produce is usually the top shelf away from the fans, but be sure to double-check the owner's manual.

Always be sure that no food is stored by resting it on the floor. This is a health code violation that is in place to keep food from being contaminated.

First In, First Out

First-in, first-out (sometimes referred to as FIFO) is the most important rule for proper refrigeration. This means that the food that you bought and stored first, gets used first. Place new items to the back of the fridge or the back of the shelves, then use the older items at the front. 

Labeling will also play a key role in making sure that items are used in the FIFO order. It's important that fresh items are being used before their best-by date and if the best-by dates are not clearly displayed, write them with large numbering in a visible location on the packaging. 

Organizing your commercial refrigerator will make staff's jobs easier, avoid health code violations, make cleanup accessible, and ensure good quality of the food. Once your commercial refrigerator is organized well you will be able to run your restaurant with expert efficiency.

For more information about commercial restaurant equipment, contact a local distributor.