Regular food safety inspections ensure that food businesses follow standards set by the government for making foods safe for consumers. Another key objective of food safety inspections is to lower the occurrence and spread of food-borne diseases.
If you are a food business, you could be up for a food safety inspection anytime. Here are some things you must know about food safety inspections.
Authorities Check for Essential Food Safety Practices
Food businesses must follow standard practices at all stages of food handling and preparation to ensure that the food is safe to eat in its intended form. Some key aspects that authorities often check for include:
- The hygiene and safety methods followed by your crew for handling, storing and preparing food
- The methods of food preparation, especially,
Maintenance of the right temperature for foods such as meat and poultry. For example, the right temperature to cook the thickest segment of chicken is at least 75℃.
Raw chicken must be stored below 5℃ while cooked chicken must be stored above 6℃ to prevent the growth of bacteria that can cause food poisoning.
Proper cleaning and sanitising of the work area. For example, raw chicken can contaminate cooked and ready-to-eat food, and even the surfaces it comes into contact with.
Therefore, it needs to be stored separately, and the surfaces and equipment that come into contact with raw chicken must be sanitised properly.
Personal hygiene of your food-handling crew. Dirty clothes can contaminate foods such as cooked chicken.
Washing hands and gloves frequently is important when handling food items such as raw meat as there is a risk of cross-contamination.
- The knowledge and skills of your crew with regard to food hygiene and safety
Your Practical Checklist for a Safety Inspection
- Ensure that the staff has a recognised Food Safety Supervisor who is accessible whenever required. The Food Safety Supervisor must be knowledgeable about the relevant regulations and must have finished food safety training.
- Have appropriate food safety certification of previous inspections in place. Ensure that they are readily available for evaluation.
- Store food items according to stipulated temperature standards. Use clean containers for storage. Ensure that the food is covered during storage.
- Have a physical record that shows how temperatures are monitored and maintained for different foods, especially high-risk foods.
- Store raw meat separately to prevent contact with other foods.
- Maintain work areas spick and span.
- Instruct food handlers to wash their hands frequently. Sanitise equipment properly.
- Ensure that an effective pest control process is in place.
- Ensure food is labelled accurately.
- Conduct routine checks of equipment and order repair where necessary.
- Check the work areas regularly to ensure maintenance of hygiene standards by the staff.
- Ensure that staff members are able to answer food safety queries.
E Wash can help meet the hygiene needs of your staff and business. We are a professional linen and laundry service provider catering to the commercial laundry needs of Melbourne.
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Call (03) 9521 3881 for more information.