Common Questions About Commercial Popcorn Machines
Why do some popcorn poppers have wheels?
These throwback machines are styled after the very first automated popcorn machines, which came into use in the 1890s. The first commercial popcorn poppers were used as street carts, enabling operators to follow whatever attraction was drawing a crowd or park at a busy sidewalk and entice customers with the scent and sound of popping corn. These first machines were powered by steam engines and frequently roasted peanuts, chestnuts, and even coffee along with popcorn. Our throwback versions aren't steam powered and don't make coffee, but they do offer the celebratory air of a town fair, circus, or picture show. Most of them are mobile, and some even use gas to power the machinery. As such, they are perfect for temporary or mobile venues, such as a farmers' market.
Should I get a display popper or a back-of-house unit?
Many commercial popcorn machines are designed to be aesthetically appealing and entice your customers into purchasing popcorn. Others have utilitarian designs that focus on producing quality popcorn quickly. If you plan on having the popcorn maker on the counter or on display in your establishment, choose one that looks inviting. Typically, these models will have windows through which the customer can see the corn popping and filling up the machine, along with a door for scooping popcorn. The back-of-house options are made for efficiency. If you plan on making very large quantities of popcorn or if your popcorn station will be back-of-house, don't worry about aesthetics. Instead, get the machine that does the most work in the shortest amount of time.
Which industrial popcorn machine do I need?
You'll need to make several differentiations before purchasing an industrial popcorn machine, the first being size. How much space do you have available for a popcorn machine? Then consider what space will maximize the use of a popcorn machine. If you plan on merchandising with the machine, your space will need to be near the front of the house. You'll also need to determine how much popcorn you sell on average and choose a machine that meets that demand. Popcorn poppers are rated by the volume of unpopped kernels the kettle will hold at a given time. Volume of kernels translates to different total servings based on how big your establishment's servings will be. Consult the specification sheet on the product you're considering to find detailed breakdowns of exactly how much popped corn each machine can produce over a given time frame.
The last major consideration you'll need to make is power. Smaller options typically use a standard 120v plug, so all you'll need is an outlet. However, some larger machines need more power. Consult building maintenance to ensure you'll be able to power the machine in the desired location.