Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Akshaya Patra Kitchens setting high standard in efficiency, hygiene and delivery

 Akshaya Patra centralised kitchen have set the bar high for efficiency, hygiene and delivery standards.
Akshaya Patra kitchens are nothing but actual food factories. It is in these kitchens that hope is nurtured every day. Hope, that today a child will not go hungry, or that he will not have to resort to labour to earn money for a single day’s meal.

Collectively, Akshaya Patra kitchens feed 1.3 million schoolchildren in 10,050 government schools every day. Akshaya Patra’s centralised and de-centralised kitchens are located in 19 locations across nine states.  11 of Akshaya Patra’s centralised kitchens are ISO-22000 certified and the organization runs 17 centralised and 380 decentralised kitchens in all.

The state-the-art-centralised kitchens are equipped with chopping machines, boilers, cauldrons, chimneys, conveyor belts, steel ducts through which the food passes and so on.  There is a board room and a food laboratory in each centralised kitchen as well.

Each Akshaya Patra centralised kitchen has the ability to cook between 50,000 to 1,50,000 meals. Meals are cooked in automated, steam-heated cauldrons that are custom-built to optimise time. Technological innovation has been adopted by Akshaya Patra to constantly increase preparation speed, efficiency and leave less room for errors. Roti-making machines in Akshaya Patra kitchen have been designed and modified to increase the output; this mammoth machine can now churn out 60,000 chapattis in an hour.

Hygiene and quality standards are the primary priorities of the cooking process.  Protective gear is mandatory for all employees.  The kitchens operate in a gravity-flow mechanism to prepare meals. Chopping and cleaning is carried out on the second floor, cooking on the first and packaging on the ground floor. This mechanized process is used to reduce human handling of food to reduce the risk of contamination.
The cooked food is packaged in containers and transported to schools in custom-built vehicles that are insulated to keep the food fresh till it reaches the children at lunch time.

To suit the palate of children in different parts of the country, the menu is set accordingly. The North Indian menu consists of roti and sabji, while the South Indian menu consists of rice, sambar and curd. Nutritious vegetables are always used to prepare the meals, still ensuring that the meals are tasty and enjoyed by the children.

Akshaya Patra centralised kitchen have set the bar high for efficiency, hygiene and delivery standards. It is a core feature of Akshaya Patra’s mid day meal programme to maintain its extensive operations without compromising on its high quality standards. 

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