• Royal Caribbean‘s Symphony of the Seas has a weekly guest list of at least 6,600 travelers weekly.
  • A culinary team of 280 chefs run the kitchen areas 24/ 7, with each chef working 10 to 12 hours a day to feed their guests on the cruise ship
  • Cooking and preparation work is divided between 36 kitchen areas, with main storage and prep cooking areas off the ship’s secret highway, I-95, which runs the whole length of the ship on deck two.
  • Visit Organisation Insider’s homepage for more stories

Following is a transcription of the video.

Storyteller: Weekly, over 6,600 individuals trip aboard the world’s largest cruise ship. And all those individuals require to eat 3, 4, 8 times a day.

Allan Gentile: You have to determine. There is breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus treats, plus night, plus all 24- hour food all around. And that never stops.

Storyteller: Ship kitchens run 24/ 7. Manned by a culinary group of more that 1,000 people, they dispense over 30,000 meals each and every single day. And they do it all from compact cooking areas on a rocking ship. How does all this food make it to the plate?

We’ll start on the packing dock on a Saturday. This is turnaround day, when all brand-new food is delivered to deck 2.

Jaret de Silva: This is basically a place that you would not like to be on turnaround when we are loading. It’s hectic, busy, incredibly hectic.

Storyteller: That’s Jaret. He buys food for the ship’s 23 various restaurants. Every week, Jaret’s got a $1 million shopping spending plan. All of that is just for 7 days of food. Sometimes Jaret will tweak his orders based upon who’s coming aboard. More kids suggests more chicken fingers.

De Silva: That’s how the operation runs. We monitor it daily, what has been used, what has actually not been utilized. And then we adjust our orders accordingly. By in big, being in Miami, having the same number of people, it’s almost the exact same every cruise.

Storyteller: On turnaround day, 30 trucks come to Miami Port. They’re carrying 500 pallets worth of stock, and all that has to be loaded onto the ship by 4 p.m.

De Silva: Any hold-up in our operation can hinder the sail away of the ship, which is, again, a huge logistic requirement.

Narrator: Over 600,000 pounds of food and drinks are provisioned for simply one week of cruising. Once on board, everything is moved along the ship’s secret highway. This is I-95, and it runs the whole length of the ship on deck 2.

De Silva: We separate all the shops to the various locations that they are expected to go. We have about 20 different storerooms, divided into freezers, fridges, walk-in refrigerators, and dry shops.

Storyteller: Seafood, meat, vegetables, and fruit are all divided and kept in different refrigerators.

De Silva: If you come towards the end of the cruise, this box will be almost empty with a few fruits that are needed for two more days, which we keep as backup stock.

Narrator: There are also 6 freezers. That’s where the 700 pounds of ice cream that’ll be consumed weekly are stored. Dry products are saved down on deck one.

De Silva: Filled with spices, loaded with chocolate in this stockroom, coffee, it’s good to be in this storage room.

Narrator: An elevator gets the food downstairs. Jaret’s group checks all of the food for quality control every day. If fruit and vegetables is ripening quicker than anticipated, they try to work it into another meal. Overripe broccoli might go into broccoli cheddar soup rather of being tossed. When inventory is kept, restaurants on upper decks put in food orders with Jaret. Chefs will come downstairs, get their order, and haul it away to be cooked. That’s where this guy comes in.

German Eladio Rijo Rijo: Any food on board this lovely ship, anything you’re eating, is my duty. Whenever you have gorgeous potato fry, it’s mine. Rice is mine, pâté is mine, pastry is mine. Salad, shrimp, whatever you’re eating is my duty.

Narrator: Rijo’s team of 280 chefs run the kitchens 24/ 7. Each chef works 10- to 12- hour days. Contracts typically last four months, without a single day off.

Rijo: Some of individuals begin to operate at 8: 00 in the early morning all the method to 2: 00, take a break, return once again 5: 00, feeding by 9:30 Then other group begins to work at 10: 00 in the night, all the way to 10: 00 in the early morning. We cover day and night productions.

Narrator: Chefs on board formulate almost 100 various menus every week. All the menus are established at Royal Caribbean’s Miami headquarters. And weekly, chefs stick to the exact same rotation of menus, cooking up everything from lambs ribs to hand-rolled sushi. The food has to be diverse to match Symphony of the Seas’ worldwide guests vacationing at all sort of price points.

Rijo: We try to please everyone and to make certain that everyone discover what you’re trying to find.

Storyteller: All the cooking takes place in 36 kitchen areas, or galleys, as they’re called on a ship. There are 12 specialized dining establishments on board, costing as much as $50 a person, and each of those dining establishments has its own small galley. In those tight quarters, chefs crank out the exact same menu every day. At Jamie’s Italian, it’s fresh pasta. At Hooked, it’s over 2,000 oysters shucked per cruise.

But the largest quantity of food is reserved for the primary dining room, which covers 3 decks and serves up to 6,000 individuals a night. Eating here is included in your ticket. Prior to food heads up to the primary galleys, it begins in one of the prep kitchen areas. Off I-95, there’s a butcher shop.

De Silva: Butcher! Good early morning! These are the gentlemen looking after all the meat cuts.

Narrator: The butcher goes through about 15,000 pounds of beef and 9,700 pounds of chicken each week. There’s likewise a veggie-cutting room and a fish-thawing box. Lobster is the most popular meal in primary dining. The ship goes through about 2,100 pounds of lobster tails weekly.

Finally, the food heads upstairs to the primary galley. The ship’s biggest kitchen area is broken down by categories. Desserts, bread, cold food, and hot food. In dessert, chefs whip up cakes, chocolates, and 100 different kinds of pastries. Over in the bread bakeshop, they make 40 various type of bread from all over the world, all from scratch. The genuine hustle comes just before the supper rush. 6,000 hungry travelers in the primary dining room.

Remember Rijo? Before dinner prep begins, he has to authorize all the dishes.

Rijo: Good afternoon.

Chefs: Great afternoon, chef.

Rijo: How are you, chefs?

Chefs: Great.

Rijo: Excellent.

Storyteller: Rijo attempts each dish and offers his critiques.

Rijo: We’re going to put a bit more fennel, a little bit more garlic, a bit more herbs.

Extremely, great. So this is what we’re searching for.

Aioli. Aioli, we require to put a bit more for today. Yeah? You can see, chef, how it looks. Yeah? Take a note. Don’t forget.

That’s what I’m discussing. All right. Stunning, lovely.

We do not have any challenges. We are ready to go?

Chefs: Yes, chef.

Rijo: Está bien? Chefs, thank you so much, and thank you so much. I eagerly anticipate having a beautiful night tonight. Thank you. Have a lovely day. Bye-bye.

Narrator: Chefs take his notes and get cooking. Chefs can see a tally of each dish ordered up on screens. The system also keeps an eye on just how much inventory is utilized. In the cold space, salads and appetizers like carpaccio come together. In the hot room, chefs dish out soups, sauces, sides, and mains.

Andreas Dymke: We have 2 sort of chefs. Chefs working here on the line, which is close to me, plating up, and chefs on the range cooking. Whatever we do is in batch cooking. Generally, we grill the steak there. We pass it over to the pass. The person on the pass is plating it as much as the requested temperature level. That means, constantly, that the visitors are getting fresh food, and from an operational point, we don’t have any overproduction.

Narrator: Finally, waiters provide those dishes to starving guests out in primary dining. Between the chefs, inventory crew, waiters, and dishwashing machines, it takes a group of 1,085 individuals to keep this massive operation going. Together, they cook almost 11 million meals each year. And they’re doing it all on a moving ship.

Gentile: The ship is rocking, then all the equipment is constructed to the ship rocking. And in whatever minute, maybe the ship moves, someone do not put one break in one trolley, and you see that trolley flying away. It occur. That’s why all the cooks constantly take note with that.

Storyteller: But if team members are doing their task right, passengers will not even know any of it’s occurring. They’ll simply return to consuming their 8th meal of the day.

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Marco Bitran
Husband and father of two children under age 5, Marco also enjoys walks in nature, squash, running road races, and photography. He regularly contributes significant time and resources to the Combined Jewish Philanthropies, the MSPCA and other animal rights organizations, and the Bitran Charitable Foundation. Marco has also volunteered and consulted for public housing support organizations such as the Somerville Homeless Coalition, created by the local community’s grassroots response to the social crisis of homelessness.