New York, United States-
Finding shoes that are comfortable and yet, safe and compliant with industry regulations, has been a struggle for many Chefs and kitchen workers. Chefs have complained about uncomfortable shoes that leaves them aching at the end of a long working day.
While the footwear industry has produced over the past decade shoes that are light and comfortable, most of them are not suitable for professional kitchen environments as they lack the safety-features of a professional working shoe.
Chef’s Pencil has released a report that cuts through the noise and amateur advice and provides some long-needed advice on buying proper chef shoes. Chef’s Pencil has interviewed top doctors on the characteristics of a safe kitchen shoe and injury prevention.
In addition, Chef’s Pencil has also surveyed 178 chefs from all over the world and asked them about their favorite shoe brands.
The results of the survey showed that the most popular brand for kitchen footwear is Birkenstock. Birkenstock gathered 30% of the votes, more than double of the nearest competitor. Birkenstock is a German footwear manufacturer with 245 years of tradition behind it. It is renowned for its top-quality products and comfortable shoes.
Coming in second is the American shoes company Crocs. Crocs is a hugely popular shoes brand in the United States and its professional shoe line is one that is greatly appreciated by Chefs. In an interview for Chef’s Pencil, a senior company executive for Crocs shared that their Crocs at Work line is designed with the hospitality industry in mind. The shoes are light, yet slip-resistant, and provide good traction on the slipperiest surfaces.
The top three is closed by another American shoe manufacturer: Shoes for Crews. Shoes for Crews is represented twice in Chef’s Pencil rankings through their Mozo brand, which was acquired by the company in 2016.
The top 10 contains other household names like Dansko, Dr. Martens, Sika, Skechers, Keen and Klogs.
Chef’s Pencil panel of experts agree that wearing kitchen footwear is highly important for injury prevention. Standing for prolonged periods of time (greater than 5 hours) places a significant amount of stress on the lumbar spine, hips, knees and ankles tells Nirav Pandya, MD to Chef’s Pencil. Chefs need to make sure they are buying shoes that are comfortable, have arch support and are safe.