Cross-contamination is one of the largest risks most food service businesses face. Not only can it affect the taste of food, but it is a major contributor to food-borne illnesses. Luckily, avoiding cross-contamination can be achieved by implementing a few simple strategies like these.
From dishwashers up to head chefs, every kitchen employee should be trained in safe food handling when they are hired and periodically throughout their tenure. Check with local health officials to see if there are specific courses or certifications for individuals who are directly handling food. Most will cover topics such as hand washing, safe temperature zones, and proper cleaning procedures.
Proper Food Handling
Implement procedures that encourage proper handling and storage of food products. These basic concepts can help you get started developing more thoughtful and safe food handling procedures:
- Store raw and cooked food separately both before and after preparation
- Keep meats and vegetables separately
- Use different equipment for food items
Any surfaces that come into contact with food, whether it is raw or cooked, need to be cleaned and sanitized. This removes any residue and can greatly reduce the chances of cross-contamination.
Cross-contamination is a serious risk to restaurants and other food service businesses. Staff education, thoughtful prep procedures and thorough cleaning can go a long way to help improve overall food handling practices.