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Maintaining a clean and safe environment is crucial for every kitchen but it is particularly important in busy foodservice kitchens and restaurants. It only takes one outbreak to ruin your reputation and possibly your business.
With a little education, proper precautions, and the right equipment, you can ensure your employees are following industry standard sanitation and personal hygiene procedures.
Carlisle has a wide range of sanitation products that give you the confidence you need to ensure your kitchen is serving your customers food free from contaminants and bacteria; your staff and customers are safe; and your entire restaurant is sparkling clean.
Personal Hygiene Best Practices
At the top of the list of food safety precautions is hand washing. There is no such thing as an employee who washes their hands too often.
Restaurant staff should wash their hands:
- Before beginning to cook or prep food
- After using chemicals
- After you use the restroom
- After taking out the garbage
- Before and after handling raw meat, poultry, or seafood
- After bussing dishes
- After touching your hair, face, or body
- After touching your clothes or apron
- After you sneeze, cough, or use a tissue
- After handling money
- After smoking, eating, or chewing tobacco
- After touching anything that may contaminate your hands
However, frequency isn’t the only factor in effective hand washing. Proper technique is just as important. To ensure your employees are washing their hands effectively, teach them the following 5-step-procedure recommended by ServSafe:
- Rinse your hands with running water at 100°F or more.
- Apply enough soap to build up a good lather. For superior results, use a San Jamar Rely Electronic Hybrid Soap & Sanitizer Dispenser. They can dispense bulk sanitizers, lotions, or soap and the no-touch design helps stop the spread of bacteria.
- Scrub hands and lower arms thoroughly for at least 15 seconds, making sure to scrub under fingernails and between fingers. A great tool for thoroughly cleansing hands and nails is a hand and nail brush. Make Sparta Hand and Nail Brushes a must-use tool at all your hand washing stations. Long side bristles help scrub hands and between fingers, while short bristles in the middle get deep under fingernails to get your hands so clean a surgeon would be proud.
- Rinse hands and arms thoroughly under running water.
- Dry hands and arms with a single use paper towel, using it to turn off the faucet and open the door before disposing. San Jamar’s Smart System Touchless Roll Towel Dispensers are an excellent choice when you want a premium single-use hand towel dispenser. These compact high-capacity dispensers have the best sensor technology in the industry and adjustable paper length and delay let you dial in a perfect hand drying experience.
Cuts and Abrasions
In the event an employee receives a cut or abrasion, follow the steps above for the affected area to make sure the wound is clean. Next, grab the appropriate size sterile San Jamar Mani-Kare Bandage and cover the wound. They’re bright blue for easy identification by managers and to avoid an issue if an employee accidentally loses a bandage during food prep.
San Jamar’s Mani-Kare Bandage Dispenser mounts right on the wall, holds all five sizes of Mani-Kare bandages, and features one-handed, one-at-a-time dispensing to avoid waste.
Clothing, Hair, and Accessories
Protective clothing such as chef’s jackets, hats, and gloves must be worn when preparing food, and they must be regularly washed and sanitized.
Hair poses a constant contamination hazard around food. Long hair must be tied back and hair nets should be worn to prevent hair from falling into food.
Accessories such as fake nails and nail polish; necklaces and earrings; and perfume or cologne should be avoided as much as possible in restaurant service. All these can contaminate food and make it unsafe for consumption.
Let’s face it, a restaurant can be a dangerous place. 500°+ ovens, razor-sharp knives, and hazardous chemicals are a necessity in every kitchen. But you have an obligation to maintain as safe of a working environment that you can provide for your staff.
Accidents will inevitably happen. That’s why Carlisle offers a wide range of personal protective equipment from San Jamar to minimize your employee’s exposure to risk and keep them as safe as possible.
San Jamar’s BestGuard Oven Mitts provide heat protection up to 450°F for 30 seconds. They feature an angled cuff for ease of movement and even have Kevlar between the thumb and forefinger for extra durability.
San Jamar UltiGrip Hotpads have a superior-grip neoprene-like fabric that rinses clean, is dishwasher safe, and provides heat resistance up to 500° for 15 seconds.
San Jamar EZ-Kleen Full Body Protection Kit protects your employees from hot grease, boiling water, and hazardous chemicals. The kit includes an EZ-Kleen apron, two EZ-Kleen sleeves, two EZ-Kleen gloves, and an EZ-Kleen face shield.
San Jamar Sleeve with Kevlar is machine washable and protects vulnerable arms with heat protection up to 500°F for up to 15 seconds.
San Jamar Cut Resistant Gloves with Dyneema are flexible lightweight gloves made from state-of-the-art Dyneema that offer ANSI level A7 cut protection and come in five colors and in sizes small to extra-large.
San Jamar Safe-T Knife Station provides sanitary safe knife storage for up to eight knives including a cleaver and a sharpening steel. It has a cool see-through panel for easy knife selection and it’s dishwasher safe.
San Jamar Safe-T Wrap Station is an integrated solution for foil, film, and date label dispensing. It features suction cup feet to hold it securely in place to reduce the risk of cuts while using.
Cleaning and Sanitation
One of the most difficult responsibilities in every kitchen is maintaining a clean and sanitary environment. The truth is that nobody enjoys cleaning up after a busy shift, but it’s a necessary evil. Management must be proactive in training employees on effective sanitation procedures and consistently monitor them to ensure those procedures are actually being followed.
Providing high-quality easy-to-use equipment is integral to giving your employees what they need to keep your kitchen and dining areas squeaky clean. Color-coded cleaning products help foodservice employees use the right tool for the right job.
San Jamar’s Kleen-Pails are color-coded and labeled to meet HACCP standards and help your employees use the right cleaning solution or sanitizer at the right time for the right application. For example, use green Kleen-Pails for cleaning solutions and red Kleen-Pails for sanitizers, while grey Kleen-Pails for janitorial jobs and white Kleen-Pails for broken glass only. Kleen-Pails are available in four sizes from 3 Qt. to 10 Qt. and come in seven colors.
Match your pails up with Sparta’s line of color coded cleaning products available from Carlisle. Sparta offers a wide range of color coded, brushes, brooms, mops, and handles so you can get the job done right. They even have a Boot ‘n Shoe Brush to help avoid tracking grime and bacteria through food prep areas.
Restaurant equipment needs to be cleaned regularly to keep it working properly and free of stains and contaminants. Carlisle carries a complete line of equipment brushes and tools to get the job done safely and efficiently.
Sparta’s High Heat Brushes speed up griddle cleaning by allowing you to scrub the cooking surface while it’s still hot. If you’ve ever tried to clean a cold grill, you know what a huge benefit that is. Use a Sparta Broiler Master with Carbon Steel Bristles to make quick work of built up carbon deposits, rust, and built up food residue.
Every line cook’s favorite part of the shift (well basically every employee) is when the last mop bucket is emptied and put away, the lights are shut off, and the doors are locked. What a feeling. But right before that moment is every line cook’s least favorite part: sweeping and mopping the floors.
This is why floor cleaning is usually the job that gets the least attention. Grit and grime accumulate in the cracks, crevices, and corners over time.
Carlisle carries a complete line of Sparta floor cleaning products that enable an exhausted kitchen staff to get your floors so clean you can eat off of them (don’t do that though).
After cleaning and wiping down all the counter areas, grab a Sparta Duo-Sweep broom with a Sparta Fiberglass Handle and sweep up all the debris from the floors. Next, grab a mop bucket and appropriate cleaning solution and scrub the floors thoroughly, preferably with a Sparta Hi-Lo Floor Scrub Brush.