One of the biggest challenges that come with running a food business is keeping your kitchen clean every day.
Knowing that the bacteria lurk around every corner, it’s important to keep up with the highest level of hygiene standards to make sure that none of the customers or staff gets sick. That’s not good for any business.
To stay compliant with the health regulations and codes for commercial kitchens, it’s important to keep your kitchen’s hygiene in check at all times. Follow these tips to ensure that your commercial kitchen is free of any illness-causing bacteria and is always kept clean and sanitary.
1. Wash your hands properly and regularly
Regular hand washing is one of the simplest but also most important things you can do to stop the spread of bacteria in your restaurant kitchen.
All staff members assigned in the kitchen should make it a habit to wash their hands regularly. Especially after they use the toilet, touch garbage, assist someone who is sick, and also after they sneeze or blow their nose.
It should also be done before, after, and during the preparation of food as well as when handling uncooked seafood, eggs, poultry, and raw meat.
It’s best to have a poster in the kitchen that serves as a reminder for everyone to make washing their hands a habit. At the same time, it can serve as a guide that shows the proper way of washing hands. A few simple instructions will surely be easy for employees to follow and turn into an everyday routine.
2. Clean all surfaces and utensils
Every surface in the kitchen should be cleaned thoroughly after every use. The same goes for the utensils. The best way to make sure that these surfaces are clean is to wash them with a soapy hot water, using a highly absorbent towel that you can have professionally laundered after use to make sure they are free of bacteria.
3. Sanitise all kitchenware
Make sure that all utensils, cookware, and dishes are sanitised on a daily basis to make sure that all bacteria is eliminated. A commercial warewasher can wash kitchenware in high temperatures to kill all bacteria.
You can always use a temperature test strip to see if your dishwasher is hot enough. If it is not – fix it or replace it because it is not a proper defense against dangerous microbes.
4. Place proper mats
Bacteria builds up fast in the floors of any kind of kitchen. Kitchen floors are usually tiled and get slippery easily, especially when wet. Prevent those slippery patches from forming on your kitchen floor by placing non-slip mats placed on those kitchen areas that get wet a lot.
It does not only promote proper hygiene, it also helps decrease the number of slipping incidents among the staff. Just make sure that these mats are also sanitised, cleaned, and air-dried on a regular basis.
5. Use the right cleaning solutions
Keeping your restaurant kitchen sanitary may mean having to use certain cleaning chemical solutions. It’s important that you know which chemical to use in a particular spot in your kitchen.
You want to avoid getting these harsh substances on the utensils and dishes your customers use when eating. You may also want to use non-toxic and environmentally-friendly chemicals when cleaning.
6. Set a regular cleaning schedule for your staff
It’s important that you have a regular cleaning schedule to follow so that everybody knows which part of the kitchen, when and how is their responsibility to keep clean. In this way, no one forgets to clean the kitchen after all the work is done.
It’s also best to assign each employee with their designated station in the kitchen. This is also a great way for them to be responsible for the cleanliness and hygiene of the area they work around.
7. Clean and disinfect all cleaning materials
One of the most common mistakes restaurant personnel make is not cleaning their cleaning materials. Remember, even cleaning materials should be cleaned or a regular basis too, as soiled mops, towels, and buckets can be breeding grounds for bacteria.
Make sure that the buckets and mops used to clean the floors are washed and disinfected on a daily basis to avoid spreading contaminants all over the kitchen.
8. Manage sick employees
It’s best to send unwell employees home for the day when they are showing symptoms such as fever, vomiting, or diarrhoea. If their condition doesn’t require a bed rest, you can assign them tasks that don’t involve getting in direct contact with the meals you will be serving to customers.
Remind employees that they should always inform the management every time they feel sick. It is a matter of safety of the entire staff and customers.
9. Follow food safety management principles
Following the principles of food safety management system will guide you toward the important levels of safety in a restaurant, such as:
- minimising the risks of cross contamination
- rendering the spoilage of food in your restaurant almost impossible
- eliminating the possibilities of harmful bacteria spread and growth.
It’s also important that your staff are aware of these safe practises and standards to make sure that food is kept sanitary through proper storage and preparation.
Keeping a commercial kitchen clean and making sure that everything in it is properly sanitised may seem like a daunting task. But there is nothing a solid, systematic, and efficient cleaning routine can’t fix. Simply making these cleaning tips an everyday thing for you and your staff can make a huge difference in your kitchen’s cleanliness and hygiene levels.
The good thing is, you’ve got help!
Alsco is a trusted partner of many businesses in the food industry. Alsco has been providing years of quality and reliable services and products too each and every of these businesses.
Call us today and we’ll help you find great solutions for your restaurant business.