in a cold climate or service a large territory, you need a heat
source,” he advises. “Heat is also required when the vegetable
content of the pie requires extra moisture control.”
00 PMQ’s Pizza Magazine – The Pizza Industry’s Business Magazine
Once you’ve decided on what type of bag you need, you still have
to determine how many bags will be required for your location.
You can base this decision on your store’s volume at peak busi-
ness hours, such as a Friday night, Hammack says. “We carry 15
to 30 standard delivery bags in each store at all times and three
to five of the 10-pie carriers for larger orders,” he says. “If we
have 10 delivery drivers scheduled, then we have 30 pizza bags.
If you have large orders, such as for factories and schools, then
the larger 10-pie bags make sense.”
Hotlips Pizza and Soda ( hotlipspizza.com), a pizzeria with
five locations in Portland, Oregon, keeps several sizes handy.
“We have an assortment of small bags that hold about four 18”
pizzas, some medium bags, and then a few larger bags that will
hold 10 pizzas,” says operations manager Matt Harris. “Typi-
cally, our new stores start out with two of the small bags, one
medium and one large, and, as our delivery business grows, we
buy additional bags.”
You may even want to keep a couple of extra bags on hand to
leave with customers. “Occasionally, we let a customer hold on
to a bag if it is a large order and they won’t be serving the pies
for a while, but they are always brought back or picked up after
the event,” Harris says.
A little routine care and maintenance will extend the life of
your hot bags. Check for loose stitches regularly and have them
repaired. “In many cases, the bags are not worn out, only the
seams, so we have a seamstress stitch them,” Harris says. “Then
we can use them for a lot longer.”
Don’t simply pile up all of your bags at the end of the day,
as some may still be moist from delivery. “We suggest wiping
your bags down each night with a mild disinfectant and hang-
ing them up to dry,” Sanios says. “Deep-clean them as often as
necessary by handwashing them in a basin. This keeps the bag
clean for a lot longer.” However, always take the disk or element
out of heated bags before you immerse them in water.
Finally, remember that the least expensive product isn’t always the most cost-effective choice if it fails to keep your pizzas
hot or falls apart after a few months. Whenever possible, talk to
experienced pizzeria operators and determine which products
have worked best for them.