Do you own a catering company? If you don't have the space for your supplies, take a look at what you need to know about self-storage.
What Can You Safely Store?
Even though you may have a surplus of materials, tools, equipment, and other items right now, you don't need to store everything in a rental facility. If you're not sure what to store, some of the top selections for caterers include the following:
- Linens. Do you supply customers with table cloths, napkins, and other linens? Even if you don't, chances are you have plenty of linens you use to wipe down surfaces or for similar reasons. Wash and dry all linens completely, then store them folded in boxes or bins.
- Cooking tools/equipment. Carefully store pots, pans, and other similar equipment in a storage rental. Make sure each item is completely clean, debris-free, and dry before you pack and store it. Failure to clean and dry the items could result in corrosion, mold growth, or other damage.
- Paperwork. The items you use to cook with and serve your customers aren't the only for-storage picks to consider. If you have excess paperwork, menus, or any other documents, place these in folders, air-tight plastic bins, or sturdy sealed boxes for storage.
Along with these items, you can also store your storage containers. The plastic, metal, wooden, and other types of boxes, bins, and containers you take from your kitchen to the event venue may also require storage unit services.
What Shouldn't You Store?
While it's possible to store most of your catering gear, some of your company's items should stay in your place of business. Caterers should never use self-storage services to hold the following:
- Perishable food. Not only will perishables rot in storage, but these items could also attract pests. Even food stored in a climate-controlled unit could easily turn and become unfit to eat.
- Non-perishable food. Canned and dried goods are made for storage — but not in a rental unit. Most storage facilities have strict rules regulating food (perishable or not). If a box breaks or a can dents, the item could turn, attract pests, or grow mold.
- Anything damp. Moisture is the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), it only takes 24 to 48 hours for mold to grow. Weeks or months in storage could result in a serious mold issue.
Never store anything potentially hazardous or flammable. Propane tanks and similar fuel sources don't belong in your catering company's off-site storage unit.
For more information, reach out to a self-storage facility in your area.