When it comes to food service, there are a variety of different systems and procedures that can be used. The main categories of food service include dish service, cart service, buffet service, family style service, and a combination style which can include elements of two or all three meal services. Foodservice operations involve the purchase of raw materials, verification of inventory, food preparation, and analysis of the business as a whole. In prepared food service systems, food is produced on-site and then served to customers.
This can include reheating and portioning the food. Food service managers are responsible for the day-to-day operation of restaurants and other establishments that prepare and serve food and beverages. There is also a great deal of concern for food safety, including the implementation of the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) program and quality control. Decentralized Meal Assembly is another type of food service system where food is produced in one place and transported to multiple locations for assembly at sites close to customers.
This requires equipment to maintain the right temperature. In conventional food service systems, ingredients are assembled and food is produced on site, kept hot or cold, and served to customers. Soups, main courses, casseroles, and sauces are likely to be fully prepared on-site with ingredients purchased at the opposite end of the food processing process. Most food service managers inherit a food service system, but they can make modifications to that system or select and build a new system.
More commonly known as a squat service, a waiter takes care of everything from taking orders to serving food and payment. Conventional food service systems are widely used in schools, restaurants, colleges and universities, and coffee shops.