Food Service: Five top tips for restaurant managers
It’s got to be one of the most stressful experiences for a restaurant manager or head chef: a health inspection. Fail it, and your restaurant or café can be named, shamed, fined… even shut down.
In New South Wales, the NSW Food Authority partners with 128 local councils across the state. NSW cafes and restaurants are regularly inspected by local council officers – you can expect a visit by a health inspector at least twice a year.
Most councils use a standard inspection checklist to determine a food safety score and most common violations occur because poorly trained staff neglect cleaning and sanitation guidelines.
As one of Australia’s leading manufacturers of cleaning chemicals, supplying tailored cleaning and hygiene solutions to some of Australia’s most well-known restaurants, here are our five top tips for preparing for a health inspection.
- Check your last report
Look at your last hygiene and food safety inspection report. Have you addressed any issues noted in that report? Your local council will be able to provide a copy of your last food inspection report, if you can’t find it.
- Staff training
A lack of staff training around cleaning and hygiene is one of the major reasons food service business fail their inspections. Your staff need to know what cleaning chemicals are appropriate for what circumstances. They need to know what cleaning chemicals are hazardous, if protective gear is required, and how chemicals should be stored. The most efficient way to deal with these issues is to partner with a leading chemical company that provides face-to-face staff training. Like Chempower Australia.
- Know the difference between cleaning and sanitising
Sanitising is one of the key areas that inspectors and accreditors are looking at when they review the food safety procedures of your restaurant or café. Cleaning only removes the dirt from the surfaces but doesn’t kill all bacteria. As dirt inhibits the effectiveness of a sanitiser, you can only sanitise on a clean surface. Chempower Australia can advise you on the procedures and products needed to ensure your sanitising regime gets the food safety inspection tick.
A food premise will fail a Food Safety Audit unless all your paperwork is up to date, chemicals are properly managed and staff are trained and have clear standard operating procedures for chemical handling and usage.
When you engage Chempower Australia to help meet your regulatory requirements, you will get:
- a chemical register of hazardous substances
- safety data sheets complied in accordance with legislation
- Appropriate labels on all containers complied in accordance with the Globalised Harmonised System (GHS).
- Display information, hazardous posters and sheets showing correct use of cleaning chemicals, personal protective equipment and first aid.
There’s another inspection tick!
- Personal health and hygiene
It really should be number one, because most foodborne illnesses are caused by bacteria or other microorganisms spread by people who handle food, according to a US report called Serving it Safe.
It goes without saying that your staff must not handle or prepare food if they are sick or injured in a way that can compromise food safety. But staff must have dedicated facilities – such as personal wash stations – to easily wash their hands and exposed arms frequently and at key times in food handling, such as when they switch from touching raw to cooked food.
Personal wash stations supplied by Chempower Australia make it easy for staff to maintain a compliant handwashing routine.
Restaurant managers should have operating guidelines that details the frequency in which kitchen staff clean their hands and change gloves while working. These guidelines should also cover cleaning procedures for kitchen equipment and food preparation surfaces to prevent cross-contamination and safety violations.
Your success is our success
With 20 years’ experience in providing world class chemical cleaning and hygiene solutions for restaurants just like yours, Chempower Australia can make your next food safety inspection an absolute breeze.
Chempower Australia provides a complete service package for hygiene including chemicals, cleaning accessories and comprehensive product support.
If required, we provide guaranteed visitation and service validation of chemical dispensing systems on a monthly basis, with reporting. Importantly, we will respond to issues or chemical dispenser breakdowns within 24 hours.
Your restaurant will be provided with genuine staff training – by technical specialists rather than salespeople or online modules.
You will receive proactive Work Health and Safety (WHS) support with updated and relevant information to ensure food audits and other accreditations are seamlessly met.
At Chempower Australia, we understand that our success depends on your success. The practical implication of that philosophy is reflected in the quality of our products, the standard of service we offer, the quality of our solutions and the competitiveness of our prices.