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Elior North America Strengthens Its Commitment to Culinary Innovation and the Environment: First to Market with Lava Gel® Technology’s Flame-Free, Environmentally-Friendly, All-Natural, Self-Heating Foodservice Trays

by | Nov 8, 2018 | Elior North America, What's New

Charlotte, N.C., Nov. 8, 2018 – Elior North America, one of the leading operators in the contract culinary management industry, has strengthened its commitment to innovative culinary practices and the environment with the introduction of HºEATS™ trays, a new self-heating technology powered by Lava Gel®. The trays are the first and only flame-free, mobile heat source for the foodservice industry and the product is made entirely from natural minerals and plant-based materials.

“In support of our commitment to culinary innovation, we look to identify products that can improve the overall dining experience for our guests,” said Dr. Brian Poplin, President and Chief Executive Officer, Elior North America. “Our teams tested HºEATS™ trays in our units and found they provided consistent, even heat for more than two hours, keeping food at the proper holding temperature while maintaining quality. This is a great solution for mobile, kitchen-fresh catering.”

Lava Gel® is a patented and proven self-heating technology comprised of natural minerals that produce a safe, controlled, instant source of sustained and reliable direct heat.

Elior will be first to market with the new technology, incorporating HºEATS™ into its broader organization over the coming year as a safe, reliable heat solution.

Unlike other foodservice heating products, the HºEATS™ trays have an engineered, smart heat curve that activates to meet the temperature of the food pan and then sustains evenly distributed heat between 140-165º for more than two hours. The heat curve is designed to carry catered food from the oven to the table and maintain quality during transport; chefs can now provide a direct-to-table, hot food experience with uncompromised quality whether the guest is eating a drop-off catered meal at the office, at a banquet facility or corporate cafeteria. The heat trays allow for a balanced and even distribution of heat to the food without creating hot spots or burning.

“HºEATS™ is delighted that Elior will use its product in several geographies over the next year,” said Dee Pettit, Chief Executive Officer, HºEATS™. “The test pilot was a critical part of helping us operationalize our products for launch, improving quality and reducing labor in delivery, catering, and commercial kitchen operations.”

HºEATS™ tray benefits to the foodservice industry include:

  • Smart heat – Patented, programmable heat curves for a myriad of heating temperatures, durations and needs
  • Personal safety – No fire hazards or hot liquid burns, nor any toxic or caustic ingredients
  • Food safety – Keeps dishes at food safe temperatures for long periods, and protects nutritional density with no overcook or food deterioration, a crucial need in hospitals, senior meals, and schools
  • Simplicity – Easy to activate; set it and forget it
  • Transformative – Reduces the need for expensive kitchen equipment and skilled labor to set-up or monitor, which will fundamentally change operating models, opening the door to new business processes in foodservice and creating new venues for remote foodservice
  • Mobility–Ideal for on-site, delivery, or remote foodservice
  • Duration – Preserves texture, nutrition and maintains kitchen-fresh quality for over two hours
  • Affordability – Labor savings make the product significantly more affordable

In addition to HºEATS™ benefits, the Lava Gel® compound is nontoxic, made from natural minerals and plant-based materials, making it an attractive option for companies looking for more environmentally-friendly solutions.

“Elior North America serves more than one million meals each day across the U.S. and is committed to being a good corporate citizen in the communities where we operate,” said Poplin. “HºEATS™ plant-based materials and natural minerals provide an environmentally-responsible product for our operations.”

About Elior North America
Elior North America enhances people’s lives through culinary innovation and a commitment to providing exemplary service. The family of companies, with over 19,000 team members, provides foodservice solutions and catering to more than 1,500 client accounts in five industry segments across the continental United States. Elior North America is among the top five contract foodservice companies in the United States. The company is part of the European contract catering firm Elior Group. Learn more at

About HºEATS™
HºEATS™ is a Las Vegas-based company focused on bringing new heating innovations to the food industry. With increased demand for hot food in packaged, mobile, delivered and remote formats, HºEATS™ is filling a need for better and smarter heating and holding solutions. Powered by Lava Gel®, HºEATS™ is adapting the Lava Gel® technology for use in the foodservice and retail food industries worldwide. HºEATS’ first products are aimed at foodservice operators. Other foodservice heat & hold products and retail heat & eat packaging powered by Lava Gel® are in development. Learn more at

About Lava Gel® USA
Lava Gel® is a privately-held company based in Las Vegas, NV. A pioneer in natural mineral energy, Lava Gel® provides safe, reliable, controllable spot heat across a number of industries for over a decade through its 90+ patents. Comprised of a diverse group of scientists, manufacturers, marketers, and industry veterans, Lava Gel® USA is dedicated to using mineral energy to improve lives through the disruptive power of reimagined heat. Learn more at


Elior North America
Suzanne Manella, 630-440-9817
Debbie Albert, 215-283-6006


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