It has been reported that more than 60 diners in one of the world's 50 best restaurants in Copenhagen have been affected by an outbreak of food poisoning in March 2013, showing that even in the most carefully run and reputable restaurants the unexpected can happen.
Nearer home in the UK the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has been emphasising the importance to restaurants and their customers of displaying the food hygiene ratings resulting from FSA inspections.
The FSA issues six ratings after inspection with the lowest being zero, requiring urgent action, to five out of five, which is classified as very good.
In one particular UK county in 2012 out of a total of 634 inspections over the year three food operations, including one at a Christmas market in December 2012, were prosecuted for failings in food hygiene standards while 12 were given improvement notices and 292 received written warnings.
When economic conditions are challenging and the market is even more competitive at a time when consumers have less disposable income to spend, everything that a business can do to attract customers will help.
Although catering businesses are not legally required to display their ratings the FSA has been encouraging diners to look for them when choosing where to eat out and doing so would therefore be likely to enhance the reputations of those restaurants' reputations.
One regional health officer has reported that in the economic downturn more businesses have been cutting corners, for example by not buying the correct sort of cleaning materials. While the alternatives may be less costly the question is whether they are appropriate and effective compared with the more expensive recommended materials.
One way in which restaurant owners or managers can have some peace of mind about hygiene standards in their kitchens is to ensure the establishment has a programme of regular kitchen deep cleaning in place in addition to the daily protocols for safe and careful storage and handling of the ingredients that are to be prepared and of the daily cleaning process.
Kitchen deep cleaning is part of an overall hygiene strategy that should include regular checks on the temperature of food storage appliances and ensuring staff follow the practices involved in minimising contamination risks and ensuring surfaces, utensils and appliances are regularly cleaned.
Subject to how busy a kitchen is and depending on the type of food it cooks, a thorough deep clean may only need to be carried out once a year.
An experienced professional contractor will advise on the frequency and organise a top to bottom deep clean to get rid of the deposits that gradually accumulate on walls, around the feet of work tables and appliances and in extraction and ventilation system ductwork. It will also check and make sure that filters in extraction hoods are performing efficiently.
A reputable cleaning company will also provide certification that the work has been carried out so that restaurant owners and managers can show evidence of its cleaning and hygiene regime when an inspection by environmental health officers is due.
Copyright (c) 2013 Alison Withers
Article Source: http://www.abcarticledirectory.com
Scheduling regular deep cleaning can help restaurant owners and managers to have confidence in the hygiene standards in their kitchens. By Ali Withers.
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