Chelsea Allenby is a Digital Marketer of 9 years and Managing Director of Allenby Digital Ltd, an online marketing agency she set-up in 2015, specialising in social media and content marketing. www.chelseamarketing.co.uk
Deliveroo dark kitchens have been popping up all over the world due to the increase in home delivery across the world. The dark kitchen is one without a storefront or front of the house. A kitchen that operates from a non-customer facing location but fulfils orders for delivery. Deliveroo recognised this steady shift and focused more on delivery kitchens to accommodate it. With this, a new concept is now emerging: shared kitchens.
But What Are Shared Kitchens?
Just as the name would suggest, a shared kitchen is typically a large kitchen that is used by multiple businesses. Each restaurant has its own space within a shared facility so equipment and areas are not technically shared, it’s just the building/facility. Each business is also maintained separately to ensure health standards are met independently for each brand.
It’s a concept that’s on the rise in the US and is now starting to pick up in popularity over here in the UK too. Mission Kitchen is one company offering shared kitchen space at affordable prices. Their focus is on giving independent food businesses flexible access to a fully kitted out kitchen. Mission Kitchen consider themselves ‘start-up friendly’ because of this and they appeal to many new businesses looking to expand or get things up and running quickly.
Kitchen United in the US offers restaurants the option to lease a ‘kitchen centre’ in their shared facility. This is another example of a ‘dark kitchen’ or ‘ghost kitchen’ as they are also known by. There is no front of house or dining area but delivery employees and diners can collect from a small pick-up kiosk. Restaurants can simply prepare food, which is ideal for delivery restaurants who receive orders online.
Food Delivery Companies
The concept of the shared kitchen works particularly well for delivery-only restaurants because there is no fight for competition. Marketing and outreach are completely separate and as far as customers are concerned there is no connection to any other brand or competitor. The only thing that does connect them is the space they cook from and this is still very much separate although it’s within the same building.
What Are the Benefits of Shared Kitchens?
Each shared kitchen facility is slightly different, some will offer fully kitted out kitchens, some will offer the basics and some will offer more specialised equipment. Overall there are some general key benefits to restaurant owners:
- They can help restaurants or chefs expand into new areas that would otherwise be quite costly.
- They can assist start-ups, providing them with a full production kitchen on lease.
- They save costs. Restaurants are paying a share of rent instead of the footing the entire bill.
- The kitchens are already built to meet the required safety standards
If your main focus is on home delivery and you’re interested in expanding your business into new cities or even launching a new start-up with limited funds, a shared kitchen space could be the way forward.