Stero and Somat Team With PBAC To Expand Reach To Foodservice Community

ITW Stero and Somat

If you’re the owner or operator of a foodservice establishment in the greater New York City area, it will soon be easier to acquire glass washers and rack conveyors, disposers, and pulpers to make your operation as efficient as possible.

Well-known providers of warewashing equipment and waste management solutions have added two new rep groups to their network to manage sales for the brands. ITW Food Equipment Group brands— Stero and Somat —have added manufacturers’ representative groups PBAC & Associates and Premier Marketing Group. PBAC & Associates will represent Stero, Somat, Red Goat and Master Disposers in New York and Northern New Jersey, as part of the national expansion. Premier Marketing Group will represent Stero and Somat brands within the state of Michigan.

“PBAC and Premier Marketing Group will add a tremendous amount of experience, knowledge and relationships to our portfolio of brands,” said Doug Cole, business development manager for Stero and Somat equipment. “Developing these markets will make our product solutions more accessible and support our long-term growth strategy for warewash and waste equipment.”

“Our partnership with ITW Food Equipment Group spans across product categories, over a 25-year history. The expansion of Stero and Somat brands to our portfolio will create new options for the operators we support in New York and New Jersey, and we look forward to leveraging these brands for their benefit,” said Larry Cantamessa, principal at PBAC &

“Stero warewashing systems have been manufactured at U.S.-based facilities for over 70 years. Stero designs durable and efficient commercial glass washers, undercounters, door-type dishmachines, rack conveyors, flight conveyors and utensil washers for institutional and non-institutional operations. Simple, intuitive controls, reliability as a result of heavy-duty construction, and serviceability are the hallmarks of the brand,” according to Cole.

Hotelex/UBM January 2019 728×90

Stero’s goal has always been to support customers by providing a simple and durable warewashing solution that will keep up with today’s clean-up demands. “For that reason, our popularity has always been in the larger institutions like correctional facilities, prisons, hospitals and universities,” noted Cole.  “For example, we have a lot of machines on Rikers Island because correctional facility operators are typically very, very hard on the equipment. Our washers are built for high volume, fast-paced operations.”

The addition of Stero and Somat strengthens PBAC’s ability to offer the best solution to a customer based on their unique requirements.  “If the unit is going into a prison facility, where you’re not going to have maintenance access and the end-users may abuse the equipment, you need something that’s going to hold up and be very easy to maintain,” Cole added. “PBAC can now provide the best solution from their product portfolio based on the customers’ needs.”

Additionally, Stero equipment has some of the highest production numbers as it relates to the quantity of dishes, glasses, and normal ware that you can run through a washer, according to Cole.

The new affiliation for Stero/Somat with PBAC enables them to provide solutions to the independent restaurant operator in Metro New York. “There are many independent servicers in Metro NYC that are very knowledgeable and capable providers. So the Stero/Somat line enables customers to access world-class brands and continue the valuable relationships they have built with their service providers.”

Another trait that the company is proud of is that their products are still built in the U.S.  “Most of our Stero equipment is assembled in Lancaster, PA, where we also build Somat, Red Goat and Master Disposers,” Cole explained. “Over 70% of our parts are also assembled or manufactured here.”

Dealing with waste is always a challenge for foodservice operations, and Somat systems further support the clean-up process in the back-of-the-house.  The Somat Company helps institutions reduce overall waste and hauling costs. Somat systems are ideal for urban office buildings, composting programs on rural campuses, zero-waste efforts within schools and can contribute to LEED® certification in restaurants and other foodservice environments seeking that accreditation. Colleges and universities, secondary schools, hospitals, hotels, casinos, cruise ships, government and correctional facilities have all partnered with Somat over the years for cost-cutting, environment-sustaining solutions.

Somat’s benefits for waste reduction are maceration and the transportation of that waste stream. “The first stage of a Somat system is to grind the food waste.  We have two different types of grinders: a pulper and a food grinder. A pulper handles food waste, but it also handles styrofoam, cardboard, plastic, paper, and most of your compostables,” Cole explained. A food grinder handles just food waste. “It’s all about reduction, and withholding solids from the waste water.  The grinders take the waste and mix it with water, creating a slurry. Once we turn the waste into a slurry, it’s 95% water, and we can pump that almost

In larger, remote systems, an institution may have multiple pulpers located near scrapping areas, and food grinders in the prep areas. “Those machines can be connected together and the waste is then transported to a remote location,” Cole said.  “We can pump the slurry upstairs, downstairs, or even to another building. We’ve designed systems that pump the waste underneath parking lots to a separate building, housing the extractor or ‘de-watering’ device. The extractor pulls the water out of the waste, creating a semi-dry pulp. The water is then re-circulated back to the pulper for re-use, while dumping the waste directly into the dumpster.  That process reduces the volume of waste by eight times.”

The pulp can be directly dumped into a dumpster and hauled away or fed into a Somat dehydrator. The dehydrator is a batch process and holds about 220 lbs. of waste. The dehydrator is mobile, so when it’s full, you simply push it out of the way and let it do its job. “Keeping in mind that the waste has already been reduced by the pulping process, the dehydrator reduces the volume of waste an additional eight times, and also the weight of waste another eight times,” Cole explained.

While this kind of remote system is usually used by a large institution like a casino or a hospital, there are options for smaller operations, as well.  “We make another model called the Close Coupled System. This product directly connects the pulper to the extractor. Everything happens in one place.  We have a 7.5 hp option (model SPC75) that will process up to 1250 lbs. per hour, and recently we introduced a smaller unit featuring a 5 hp option (model SPC50) lowering the cost,” Cole said.  “That’s a little easier to justify in a smaller restaurant. But the smaller system will still handle 900 to 1,000 pounds of waste an hour. So you want to be pumping out some waste volume to take advantage of this system.”

Although Somat makes solutions for smaller foodservice operations, its core competency has always been outfitting large institutions. However, the company is working towards some smaller, more affordable systems that will be attractive to national chain operations.

“Our over-arching goal is to create warewash and waste systems that accommodate a wide variety of needs, working to improve efficiencies for everyone.”

To learn more, visit the ITW website and the Stero and Somat website