Dark kitchens are becoming increasingly popular not only among big chains but also for individual restaurants and small food businesses. Also known as ghost, cloud or delivery-only kitchens, they all share the same concept: prepare meals for delivery purpose. These kitchens are cooking only for delivery rather than dine-in customers.
They are usually located at dedicated premises (often in industrial area or commercial zones) without window nor access for the customers (from which the name “dark kitchen”).
The increasing popularity of dark kitchens are the result of several factors:
- lower costs of rent and overheads (no dine-in service translates into no need for serving staff)
- adaptability of the concept (this kind of kitchens can easily be repurposed to a whole different brand or menu)
- minimal investment to build up a brand (especially through dark kitchen providers vs. building their own)
- millennial consumers impact (who are highly accustomed to using applications and instant online ordering)
- desire to optimize delivery efforts
Despite some challenges such as upholding high safety standards and ensure adequate staff welfare, dark kitchens are on the rise thanks to cutting-edge technology and increasing number of online delivery operators such as UberEats, Just Eat, Deliveroo.
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