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Home » Professional » Guidelines for Safe Food Handling

Guidelines for Safe Food Handling

Sanitizing Solution

Use unscented chlorine bleach.

  • To sanitize cutting boards, surfaces etc., mix one tablespoon (15ml) in four litres (3.5quarts) of water.
  • To sanitize dishes, dishcloths, etc., mix one teaspoon (5ml) in four litres (3.5 quarts) of water.

Food Storage

  • If repackaging foods, date and label them before putting them away.
  • Always rotate stock (first in, first out).
  • Label bulk food products with the date and product name.
  • Avoid using products that are beyond the best before date.
  • Store raw meats or poultry on a plate, or in a container, below the other items in your refrigerator so that blood cannot drip onto anything else.
  • Store food separately from cleaning products and poisons so they cannot be accidentally mistaken. Avoid repackaging cleaning products and poisons to ensure they are identifiable.
  • Always refrigerate foods such as meat, dairy products, shelled eggs, etc. If left unrefrigerated, these foods allow bacteria to grow rapidly.

Food Preparation

  • Perform hand hygiene often and always before handling food, after handling raw foods or soiled utensils, equipment or garbage.
  • Avoid cross-contamination by remembering to wash and sanitize (one tablespoon/15ml unscented chlorine bleach in four litres/3.5 quarts water) cutting boards, counter tops and utensils after each use, especially after meat and poultry.
  • Ensure cutting boards have been sanitized (one tablespoon/15 ml unscented chlorine bleach in four litres/3.5 quarts water) if previously used by someone else.
  • Use utensils or wash hands well when handling ready-to-eat foods.
  • Do not use the same plate or utensils for raw meat and cooked meats.
  • Wipe up spills immediately. Bacteria grow very quickly and spread.
  • Defrost frozen foods in the refrigerator, microwave or under cold running water. Plan ahead so that you will not to have to thaw meat or poultry on the counter.
  • Do not thaw and then refreeze meats. Defrost as described above, cook, and then refreeze.

Cooking and food service

  • Keep hot foods hot (60°C/140°F or higher) and cold foods cold (4°C /40°F or lower).
  • Use a meat thermometer to ensure meat is properly cooked.
  • Cook or reheat all foods to a minimum of 74°C/165°F.
  • Cook poultry to an internal temperature of 85°C/180°F.
  • Ensure all ground meat and poultry are thoroughly cooked. Juices should run clear when the meat is cut.
  • Prepare and cook foods as close to the meal time as possible.
  • Avoid using raw eggs in ready-to-eat products such as Caesar salad and eggnog.

Leftovers

  • Perform hand hygiene before handling leftovers. Ensure all utensils and surfaces are clean.
  • Wrap leftovers and refrigerate immediately. Do not leave leftovers on the counter to cool.
  • Divide large quantities of leftovers into small containers so they cool more quickly.
  • Date leftovers before placing them in the refrigerator and then use or freeze them soon.

Remember: if in doubt, throw it out!

Facility maintenance and construction

  • Floors, walls and ceilings should be non-absorbent, smooth and easily cleanable.
  • Kitchen facilities should be washed daily to remove all visible dirt and debris.
  • Walls, grease vents and equipment should be kept clean and regularly washed.
  • Be alert for mice or insect infestations and take immediate action if evidence exists.

Equipment and utensils

  • Utensils should be washed, rinsed and sanitized (one teaspoon/5 ml unscented chlorine bleach in four litres/3.5 quarts water) after each use.
  • Counter tops and cutting boards should be washed and sanitized (one tablespoon/15ml unscented chlorine bleach in four litres/3.5 quarts water) after each use.
  • Refrigerators should be an adequate size for the volume of food stored inside and should be monitored with a thermometer.
  • Throw out worn or chipped cups, plates and utensils.
  • Do not reuse single-service utensils such as plastic spoons and forks.
  • Store wash cloths and table sponges during the day in a pail with sanitizing solution (one teaspoon/5 ml unscented chlorine bleach in four litres/3.5 quarts water).
  • Garbage containers should be durable, easily cleanable and rodent-proof. They should be covered at all times when not in use.

Personnel

  • Food handlers should not smoke while preparing or serving food.
  • Use a clean utensil each time for food tasting (no double dipping).
  • Do not prepare food if you have sores or cuts on your hands, have a respiratory illness or gastrointestinal illness (nausea, vomiting or diarrhea).
  • Wear clean clothes and preferably wear a hair restraint (ex: a hair net).
  • Avoid touching your mouth or nose or wiping your hands on dish towels or aprons.
  • Perform hand hygiene:

– before and after eating;

– before and after cleaning a wound;

– before and after smoking;

– after handling raw food;

– after using the toilet or wiping nose;

– after contact with blood or body fluids/wastes;

– after handling soiled items or equipment (ex: after cleaning rooms or handling soiled linen); and

– after removing gloves.

Compiled from various sources
Sanitizing Solution Use unscented chlorine bleach. To sanitize cutting boards, surfaces etc., mix one tablespoon (15ml) in four litres (3.5quarts) of water. To sanitize dishes, dishcloths, etc., mix one teaspoon (5ml) in four litres (3.5 quarts) of water. Food Storage If repackaging foods, date and label them before putting them away. Always rotate stock (first in, first out). Label bulk food products with the date and product name. Avoid using products that are beyond the best before date. Store raw meats or poultry on a plate, or in a container, below the other items in your refrigerator so that blood…

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