Millions of germs are picked up by hands during everyday activities. Many of these are harmless but some can cause illness such as colds, flu and stomach bugs. Food borne bacteria can’t be seen, tasted or smelled. These microorganisms can make you sick if ingested, and they spread through contact with cutting boards, utensils, countertops and food. Proper hygiene is essential to prevent the transfer of these germs to other people and surfaces and can prevent the contamination of utensils, surfaces, ingredients and food. Following these procedures will help prevent the spread of germs, promote good food hygiene and reduce health risks.
- Keep fingernails trimmed and clean;
- Do not wear jewelry, including watches/earrings/chains/rings/etc.;
- Aprons must be worn while preparing food to protect food from dirt/animal hair/etc.;
- Hair must be tied back, tucked beneath a hat and/or a hair net must be worn;
- Open sores must be covered and gloves must be worn;
- No open toes shoes;
- All staff handling and serving food must have their food safety certification.
- Personal Hygiene - Safe Work Procedure
Always wash your hands:
- when starting or returning to work;
- after using the washroom;
- after handling ingredients, utensils, packaging materials and touching food contract surfaces;
- after handling raw/uncooked foods (e.g. meat, eggs, etc);
- before putting on food handling gloves;
- after handling potential food allergens (e.g. nuts, milk, fish, etc.);
- after touching body parts, hair, ears, nose, arm, mouth, etc.;
- after handling garbage or waste bins;
- after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing;
- after touching unclean surfaces;
- after lunch and breaks;
- every time hands become contaminated;
- after treating a cut or wound;
- after touching a sick or injured person.
- 5 Myths About Hand Washing
- Hand Washing - Safe Work Procedure
Proper hand washing is critical in preventing the spread of bacteria . It greatly reduces the chances of contaminating food and food contact surfaces. All employees/students/volunteers must wash their hands thoroughly and frequently. Hand soap dispensers have been added to all sink locations. If you are missing a soap dispenser, please contact the school custodian for a replacement.
Reminder: hand sanitizer is NOT allowed to be used as a replacement for hand washing. Hands must always be washed first with soap and water before handling food. Hand sanitizer is NOT allowed to be used when hands are in direct contact with food. Gloves may be worn. Hands must be washed with soap and water when changing gloves .
CLEAN AND SANITIZE:
Bacteria that can cause illness can survive in many places around the kitchen. Keep countertops and other kitchen surfaces clean to prevent cross-contamination.
Cleaning is the removal of unwanted material from equipment, utensils and surfaces. Removing leftover particles eliminates many microbes, their food sources and other physical debris that can contaminate future batches of food.
Sanitizing is the treatment of a clean surface with a chemical (Quato/Bleach/Iodine) or physical agent (heat). Sanitizing reduces microorganisms that cause disease and spoilage to acceptable public health standards.
- Clean surfaces with hot water and soap to remove dirt and debris. Do this after preparing each food item and before going
on to the next food item. After cleaning, sanitize surfaces as an extra precaution to kill germs.
- Wash cutting boards, dishes and utensils with hot water and soap after preparing each food item
and sanitize before going on to the next food group.
- Keep your fridge clean: Wipe spills immediately and
regularly clean the inside with hot water and liquid soap. Rinse with clean water, sanitize and dry with paper towels.
- Food preparation equipment must have written cleaning and sanitizing procedures posed next to the equipment.
- Do not use dishcloths or tea towels. Use single use paper towels.
WASHING FRUITS & PRODUCE:
Fresh fruits and vegetables do not naturally contain microorganisms (e.g. bacteria, viruses and parasites) that can cause food poisoning. However, fresh produce can become contaminated in the field through contact with soil, contaminated water, wild or domestic animals, or improperly composted manure. It can also come into contact with harmful microorganisms during and after harvest if it is not properly handled, stored and transported. In addition, fruits and vegetables can become contaminated through contact with raw food items such as meat, poultry, seafood and their juices. This can happen at the grocery store, in the shopping cart, in the refrigerator or on counters and cutting boards in the kitchen.
There are steps that can be taken to help prevent food borne illnesses. By ensuring that fruits and vegetables are properly handled, prepared and stored, you can help prevent food borne illnesses.
- Buy cold or frozen food at the end of your shopping trip.
- Examine fruits and vegetables carefully and avoid buying items that are bruised or damaged.
- If buying pre-cut or ready-to-eat fruits and vegetables be sure they have been properly refrigerated at 4°C or below. This means they should be displayed in a refrigerated container and not just sitting on top of ice.
- Separate fresh fruits and vegetables from meat, poultry and seafood products in the shopping cart and bags.
- Refrigerate the fresh fruits and vegetables that need refrigeration. This includes all pre-cut and ready-to-eat produce. When you refrigerate fruits and vegetables, keep them separate from meat, poultry, seafood and their juices.
- Cut away any bruised or damaged areas on fruits and vegetables, since harmful bacteria can thrive in these areas. Be sure to clean your knife with hot water and soap before using it again.
- Wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly under fresh, cool, running water, even if you plan to peel them. This helps prevent the spread of any bacteria that may be present. (This is a general safety tip that may not always apply.)
- Use a clean produce brush to scrub items that have firm surfaces (e.g. oranges, melons, potatoes, carrots, etc.). It is not necessary to use produce cleansers to wash fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Dry fruits and veggies with a paper towel.
- Ready-to-eat, bagged, pre-washed leafy greens do not need to be washed again before eating as this may increase the risk for cross-contamination. However, pre-cut or pre-washed leafy greens sold in open bags or containers should be washed before eating.
- Use one cutting board for produce, and a separate one for raw meat, poultry, fish and seafood.
- Place peeled or cut fruits and vegetables on/into a separate clean plate or container to prevent them from becoming cross-contaminated.
- Use paper towels to wipe kitchen surfaces to avoid the risk of cross-contamination and the spread of bacteria and avoid using sponges or fabric cloths as they are difficult to keep bacteria-free.
- Sanitize countertops, cutting boards and utensils before and after preparing food.