- Prepare sanitizer solution as recommended on the label.
- Check concentration with a test strip.
- Wipe surface with a clean cloth that has been damped with sanitizer solution.
- ALLOW SURFACE TO AIR DRY.
1. Turn both hot and cold water on in 1st sink.
2. Adjust to desired temperature (110°F/43.3°C).
3. Add dishwashing liquid as per label instructions.
4. Wash items to be cleaned. For dried-on, burnt-on residue, allow to soak.
1. Turn both hot and cold water on in 2nd sink. Adjust to desired temperature (120°F/48.9°C).
2. Fill sink with water.
3. Immerse washed items in sink to rinse off suds.
4. When water in sink becomes cloudy, drain and refill with fresh water.
1. Turn on cold water in 3rd sink. Adjust to desired temperature (75°-120°F/23.9°-48.9°C).
2. Add sanitizer as per label instructions.
3. Use test strip to check solution concentration as follows:
4. Completely immerse items for at least 60 seconds.
5. Allow items to air dry. DO NOT RINSE.
Stationary equipment such as slicers, mixers and yogurt machines should be cleaned daily or as often as necessary. Follow manufacturer’s procedure for disassembling removable parts. Clean and sanitize removable parts, using the 3-step cleaning procedure in the 3-compartment sink. Clean non-removable parts with hot soapy water and scrape off debris, preferably with a cleaning brush. Spray a properly prepared sanitizer solution and allow to dry before using equipment. Take proper precaution to prevent injury by unplugging electrical equipment and wearing proper safety gear. Cleaning tools such as wiping cloth, brushes, scrub pads should be cleaned and sanitized between use to prevent cross-contaminating food contact surfaces.
Food Contact Surfaces
Clean food contact surfaces often. Improperly cleaned and sanitized food contact surfaces can lead to cross-contamination. Do not use cutting boards or knives for ready-to-eat foods if they were previously used for raw meat or poultry without proper cleaning and sanitizing. Use a scrub brush to remove soil build-up. Rinse well to remove all cleaning chemicals from surface.
The Center for Disease Control has stated that handwashing is the single most important way to prevent cross-contamination. Cross-contamination is the transfer of illness-causing bacteria and viruses to cooked foods. Wash hands at designated sinks with antibacterial handsoap & warm water.
The 1999 FDA Food Code requires the use of a secondary barrier when handling ready-to-eat foods. Gloves, utensils, deli tissues, tongs and other utensils may be used. Hands must be washed before and after donning or removing gloves. Gloves must be changed when soiled or torn, and are always task specific, not time specific. Gloves must be changed when handling raw meat, poultry, fish, etc. and before moving to ready-to-eat foods. Hand washing and glove use go hand-in-hand!
Safety and Sanitation
The sanitation of your food establishment is of utmost importance in preventing food cross-contamination. An effective method to control food safety hazards is to develop and follow a cleaning schedule for your establishment. Survey your cleaning needs by doing a walk-through of your establishment and note all equipment and food areas. Prepare a schedule on how and when each piece of equipment and area is to be cleaned. Include who is the responsible associate, and train on how to do each cleaning task.
Food processing equipment should be constructed of durable and corrosion resistant material. Food contact surfaces should be smooth to prevent accumulation of soil and bacteria. Stainless steel is recommended for shelving. Floors and walls should be easy to maintain as well and should be free from cracks and holes where pests can penetrate and enter your establishment. Restroom care is a very important function in housekeeping due to the potential of health hazards through cross-contamination. Restroom facilities should be kept in good repair, clean and sanitary. Remember, your health inspector and your customers will judge a facility based on the cleanliness and maintenance of your establishment.
Kitchen Equipment Maintenance
Baked-on grease and soil build-up can lead to food cross-contamination. Your cleaning schedule should include regular cleaning of large kitchen equipment such as ovens, grills and hood. Observe proper precaution when using these type of cleaners. These products are caustic and can burn skin and eyes. Wear protective gear such as rubber gloves and safety glasses. Wash hands and arms immediately after use. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW LABEL INSTRUCTIONS ON PRODUCT USAGE. For daily clean-up, use an all-purpose cleaner/degreaser. The use of color coded brushes helps identify different foods and processing areas, and thus helps prevent cross-contamination. All food contact surfaces, including utensils and equipment, should be cleaned as frequently as necessary to protect against contamination of food.
Floor and Wall Cleaning
When using a sanitizer solution, make sure you check the concentration. Replace with fresh solution as necessary.
Safe Food Storage - Best Practices
- Maintain freezer at 10° F (-23°C) or below.
- Maintain cooler at 41°F (5°C) or below.
- Cool hot foods down to 70°F (21°C) within 2 hours and under 41°F (5°C) within 4 hours. Stir frequently while cooling.
- Hold hot food above 140°F (60°C) and cold food below 41°F (5°C).
- Never thaw foods at room temperature. Best to thaw in cooler.
- Keep all raw, cooked and ready to eat products separated in cooler.
- Store all food products no less than 6" (15 cm) off the floor.
- Use lids instead of messy plastic wrap to protect contents and maximize quality.
- Use clear containers to minimize unnecessary handling of product.
- Store ready to eat foods above raw foods and make sure all products are properly covered with lids.
- Use 2-1/2" deep pans where possible to ensure quicker and safer cool down and re-heating with smaller batch sizes.
Food Storage Rotation
- Cover, label and date all stored foods with contents and "Use-by date".
- Best to use FIFO (First In, First Out) food rotation system.
- When in doubt, throw it out!
- Do not use masking tape for labeling. Sticky residue harbors harmful bacteria.
- Sticky residue is tough to scrape off and can cross contaminate all food contact surfaces during handling and storage.
- Raw foods stored above cooked foods.
- Uncovered storage containers.
- Sticky label residue from masking tape or labels.
- Thawing raw food above cooked food.
Improper Food Rotation
- Containers of bulk and prepared foods are not completely covered or properly labeled with contents and use-by date.
- Using containers that are not clear so contents are not visible.
- Unsafe cooler and freezer temperatures.
- No daily temperature checks or documentation.
- Improper cooling of hot food.
- Thawing frozen foods at room temperature.
Temperature Controls – Measurement Instruments
The only way to be truly sure that the temperature of your cooked foods has reached a safe level for eating is to check it with a food thermometer. An oven thermometer is also a useful tool to ensure that your food will turn out to your satisfaction.
Use The Right Thermometer
In choosing a thermometer, be sure you use the type of thermometer designed for what you want to do.
- Meat/poultry thermometer – can be placed in food while cooking.
- Digital thermometer–recommended for fast readings. Cannot be used in oven while cooking food. Used for checking temperature at the end of cooking time.
To get an accurate reading, the sensing area of the thermometer should be completely immersed in the thickest part of the food.
- Whole poultry – USDA recommends inserting the thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh of the bird, avoiding the bones.
- Steaks & chops – place the thermometer in the center of the thickest part and stay clear of bone, fat and gristle.
- Roasts – place the thermometer midway into the roast, away from the bone and check it in several places to make sure it is done.
Keep perishable products out of the danger zone. Use a thermometer to ensure constant and accurate temperatures in your coolers, freezers and refrigerators.