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Materials Matter: what you need to know about the materials in your community kitchen

If you are responsible for managing the facilities in your church or community centre, you may know that there are three must-haves for your kitchen. It should be:

  • Hygienic
  • Durable
  • Easy to clean

In a community hub, it’s even more important to have spaces that also reflect the vibrant, welcoming nature of your community – kitchen included.

So, how do you have a kitchen that ticks all of those boxes?

By choosing a semi-commercial kitchen. To be precise, a polyester powder-coated Zintec mild steel kitchen from Steelplan.

We will explain what all of this means, and why it’s a far better choice than MDF or stainless steel, if you are looking for a long-lasting upgrade to your community hub’s kitchen.

What is Zintec polyester powder-coated mild steel – and why use it in a kitchen?

The materials in your current home or community kitchen will likely be a ‘grab bag’ of benefits – if it’s made of MDF, it may look pretty, but it will also be quite fragile. If it’s a durable and hard-wearing, stainless steel kitchen, it will look cold and institutional.

The ‘carcass’ (frame) of Steelplan’s semi-commercial kitchens are made of Zintec polyester powder-coated mild steel, which balances durability, hygiene and aesthetics – and it’s worth breaking down each element to learn why.

  • Zintec mild steel – mild steel is a comparatively light yet durable and malleable material, which means that it can be easily shaped. ‘Zintec’ refers to a type of zinc coating that assures corrosion resistance. This is used for the ‘carcass’, doors and drawer fronts of our kitchens (not worktops), which makes it significantly more long-lasting and resistant to damage than a wood/MDF kitchen.
  • Polyester powder-coating – polyester powder-coating is applied as an additional layer to the Zintec mild steel, providing further resistance to corrosion, chipping and scratches. At this stage, when Zintec mild steel is powder coated, it can be finished in a range of colours. Kitchen colours matter, and with Steelplan, there are 18 standard colours, and the option to mix and match from a nearly limitless selection of RAL colours.

Why use Zintec powder-coated mild steel instead of stainless steel?

A powder-coated mild steel surface is very easy to keep clean using water, dish soap and a microfibre cloth, whereas stainless-steel surfaces are more complicated.

On a vertical plane (on drawers or cabinets), light can show finger marks very easily on stainless steel, but not on powder-coated mild steel.

Stainless steel is, however, a good material for a worktop in a kitchen – it’s hygienic, non-absorbent, and looks striking against vibrantly-coloured kitchen cabinets.

Why not use MDF for a community centre kitchen?

MDF kitchens – often sold as ‘flat-pack’ kitchens to domestic buyers – are light-duty and often aesthetically pleasing. They are perfectly adequate for the domestic market.

However, for a community centre or church kitchen, they are far from ideal. This is because they are:

  • Delicate (subject to chipping or breakage with normal usage)
  • Absorbent (difficult to clean and unhygienic)
  • Easier to mark or scratch

You also need to be aware that you can buy MDF ‘semi-commercial’ kitchens – but if they come in a flat-pack, they aren’t truly made for a semi-commercial environment. You will go through the effort, expense and hassle of installing a kitchen that is unlikely to last, especially when compared to one built of mild steel: which, with Steelplan, arrives ready-made at your site.

We hope that this blog has helped clarify just a few of your questions about the materials you need to look out for when considering what kitchen will be best for the future of your community centre – we have a deeper comparison of the three materials mentioned above here.

If you aren’t sure where to start with your kitchen project, don’t sweat the details. You can read our guide here – and with Steelplan’s free, no-obligation design and consultation service, you have the support and advice of a kitchen design specialist to design a 3D mockup of your new kitchen – so you can see everything in its place before you put your project in motion.

Have any questions? Contact our expert team here today.