It’s important to maintain proper food safety practices in the kitchen to prevent foodborne illnesses. A food safety inspector will check for violations during an inspection. Here are eight common kitchen habits that could result in failing the inspection:
Improper Food Storage
Food should be stored at the appropriate temperature and in proper containers to prevent cross-contamination. Improper food storage can lead to the growth of bacteria and ultimately cause foodborne illnesses. Be sure to store raw meats separately from other foods and label and date all stored items.
Improper Tool and Utensil Storage
All tools and utensils should be properly stored when not in use to prevent contamination. Dirty utensils that aren’t stored correctly can also attract pests such as mice and cockroaches.
Poor Personal Hygiene
Food handlers must maintain a high level of personal hygiene. This includes wearing clean clothing, washing hands frequently, and keeping hair tied back or covered. Food handlers that have open wounds, are sick, or handling both cooked and raw food without proper sanitation can transmit harmful pathogens to the food.
Poor Kitchen Sanitation
Kitchen surfaces, floors, and walls should be cleaned and sanitized regularly. Failure to keep a clean kitchen can lead to the growth of harmful bacteria and can cause cross-contamination between food items.
Raw meats and other potentially contaminated items should be kept separate from ready-to-eat foods. It’s essential to use different cutting boards, knives, and other utensils for raw meat to prevent the cross-contamination of bacteria onto other surfaces.
All chemicals should be stored away from food or food-contact surfaces to prevent contamination. Additionally, chemicals should be labeled correctly, and staff should follow proper safety protocols when using them to avoid any accidents or risks of chemical contamination.
Food Temperature Control
Foods must be cooked to the proper temperature to kill harmful bacteria. Temperature control is essential for hot foods, which need to stay hot until service and cold foods, which need to stay cool until ready for consumption.
Pest control is essential to maintaining a clean and safe kitchen environment. Pests such as flies, cockroaches, and rodents can carry harmful bacteria and contaminate food. Regular pest control measures should be taken and proper food storage and disposal methods should be employed.
Failing a food safety inspection can have serious consequences for your business and customers. By practicing proper food safety protocols and maintaining a clean kitchen environment, you can avoid common violations and ensure your food is safe to consume.