Gastrofrit AG: clever innovation for perfect pasta and fries

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Gastrofrit deep fryers are offered with different basin sizes and unique innovations such as the removable, dishwasher-safe heater with a patented lock

The perfect preparation of French fries and pasta is the specialty of the family-run company Gastrofrit, which was founded in 1990 and is part of the Schlegel Group. With 20 employees, the company produces deep fryers and pasta cookers for commercial kitchens, front cooking and event catering at its location in Rorschach, Switzerland.

“We have been concentrating on this for 30 years and have therefore achieved an outstanding level of quality,” emphasizes Martin Vonhof, who has been responsible for international business since 2018.

Unique innovation

The Gastrofrit deep fryers are offered with different basin sizes both as free-standing as well as built-in versions and score with unique innovations, such as the removable, dishwasher-safe heater with a patented lock.

“It can be cleaned easily. Standard heaters, on the other hand, have to be laboriously cleaned by hand after operation,” explains Vonhof on the difference to conventional devices.

The system has been on the market for a good ten years and will be consistently further developed. The third version will be available shortly. Another plus – especially in event catering. “All of our devices are mobile, they have castors that allow them to be transported over uneven terrain,” said Vonhof.

The Gastrofrit pasta cookers were also in use at Vapiano in the early years – they represent the birth of pasta show cooking in Germany. “The special thing about our pasta cookers is that they are suitable for sea water, so they tolerate constant contact with salt water,” says Vonhof.

The integrated salt check guarantees a constant salt content in the cooking water by an acoustic signal to notify the user if the specified limit values are exceeded or undershot. “An important aspect when, for example, the same standards must always be met by different users in system catering,” says Vonhof.

In addition to the pasta machines, Gastrofrit also offers a turnkey freshness pasta concept, which is represented in the Bonn Campo canteen and in various stores of the pappert’s bakery chain.

International distribution

While the share of direct business in the Swiss home market is comparatively high, the distribution of Gastrofrit products in Germany is essentially via traditional resellers such as kitchen planners and builders with their own service structure or wholesalers.

From the beginning of the sponsoring membership in FCSI Germany-Austria, the “passionate networker” Vonhof hopes to have good contacts with planners and project managers in the German-speaking countries and beyond.

“It is our goal to position ourselves more internationally in the next few years and to open up new markets,” he says.

In addition to current projects in Eastern Europe, initial activities in Great Britain are also on the agenda for this year. “Despite Brexit, this is a very interesting market where our innovations are in high demand,” says Vonhof. “The same applies to Scandinavia.”

Worldwide unique filter system

The company sees great potential in the new version of its Olfo deep fryer. The frying center controls the fryer process by delivering the heat directly into the medium in a highly efficient manner with optimized use of energy. “Together with ZHAW Wädenswil, we have developed a soon to be patented, worldwide unique filter system, which means that the frying oil no longer has to be exchanged,” reveals Vonhof.

The deep-frying oil is used as a permanent resource. “Instead of draining and replacing around 50 liters of oil every two to three days, users then only need small amounts to compensate for the volume that is inevitably lost with the fried food.”

The filtering process runs mechanically during operation. “Sustainability is the main topic for us. But, of course, system catering is also about the proven financial savings that have been achieved. ”

Vonhof also points to the fact that the large chain business is currently done exclusively by American deep fryer manufacturers. “We think it’s time for a European player.”

Further details:

For more information about Gastrofrit, please visit here.