As more councils choose to publish the results of their inspections online and score establishments on their food safety practices, it is more important than ever to ensure that you are prepared for inspections. The success of your business depends on your hygiene practices as much as it does on the quality of your food. Otherwise, your reputation and your profits will suffer. If you are a fledgling business, you may not have had an inspection yet; read on for a brief guide on how to pass.
Whatever system you use, it is important to keep a record of all the daily checks that you do, such as fridge temperature checks and hot-hold checks. These only take a few minutes to carry out, but they are vital in proving that all kitchen activities are carried out correctly. You can use them to build a body of evidence that shows that you are doing everything necessary to ensure that you are producing safe food. Train multiple members of staff to ensure that these checks are carried out every day regardless of staffing. You should also keep records of all new appliances or new products.
Your kitchen and other food storage and preparation areas should be cleaned regularly; some areas will need cleaning daily, and others less so. Create a cleaning schedule and make sure that it is filled out every time any cleaning takes place. Make sure you have the right cleaning products such as disinfectants, sanitisers, anti-bacterial sprays and dh2o water. Golyath has a range of cleaning products designed with the hospitality industry’s needs in mind. Hygiene is especially important to ensure no cross-contamination occurs between different foods. The last thing you want is for a customer to get food poisoning. To clean deeply, you might want to use a uv light disinfection system – this will help to kill off any viruses or bacteria you missed during your usual cleaning schedule.
Your staff should be an asset to your business. They need to be trained on hygiene and food safety. Inspectors will likely ask your staff questions about the business’s hygiene practices, and they will be expected to know the answers. Make sure they do. You should keep a record of this training and refresher courses are recommended to ensure that your staff are ready.
As these results are generally public knowledge, you should make sure that you also understand what they mean. All food premises receive a star rating which is as follows:
- Five stars mean that the establishment is excellent. They have very high levels of compliance with all food safety legislation.
- Four stars are seen as very good. The establishment has high levels of compliance
- Three stars indicate a good level of compliance with only a few minor safety issues to address.
- Two stars mean that the business is broadly complaint, they have an understanding of food safety, and standards are improving.
- One star is poor and means that there is some non-compliance. The business needs to make more of an effort.
- No stars are very poor and reveal a failure to comply with legal requirements. In addition, it indicates that there is no effort or appreciation of food safety measures.
Food safety inspections can vary in frequency, but they tend to happen yearly. You can improve your potential rating by ensuring that you are implementing the best practices and procedures. Food safety inspections are important, but you should be ensuring hygiene as part of your business regardless.