Like most people, New Years resolutions are a wish to improve on a personal issue in the coming year. I broke mine with the extra pancakes I had the next morning, but there are a few that your restaurant should make and keep in this new year and beyond.
Keeping of logs
Logs are definitely not a glamourous part of our business, but keeping logs on cooling, holding temps, equipment temps and sanitizing levels are an excellent way to maintain proper ranges of critical points that affect food safety. Keeping logs can catch equipment problems or procedure problems before a Health Inspector finds them and leaves a Yellow Placard, or worse yet – a guest gets ill. Basic templates are available at https://health.hawaii.gov/san/food-information/
Starting with keeping a fully stocked (soap & paper towels) dedicated and fully accessible handsink, hands need to be thoroughly washed. Upon starting work, returning from bathroom and smoke breaks, handling different foods. You can’t wash your hands too often. Here is a sign you can post by each handsink https://health.hawaii.gov/san/files/2013/06/handwashinghandout.pdf
Proper Glove usage
Gloves need to be properly used when handling ready to eat foods. It starts with washing your hands before putting on gloves. Handling gloves with dirty hands can simply contaminate the gloves you are putting on. They need to be changed whenever you are working with different foods. I have never seen a DoH violation due to staff changing gloves too often!
Do you have an allergen program in place? Does your staff know how to properly respond to allergen concerns? When a guest identifies they have a specific allergy, it MUST be properly responded to. If the server or kitchen is not 200% sure they can provide the dish without an identified allergen, suggest an alternate dish to the guest. They will appreciate your restaurant for your concern for their health, and possibly life.
New HI DoH regulations
Starting in September, the DoH will require that there is one Person In Charge during operating hours that has taken and passed an ANSI certified Food Safety Course. I predict a mad rush and sold out classes in August, so make sure to be able to meet this new requirement. A great ServSafe class is given by Tina Rodgers https://www.aikahuculinarysolutions.com/training-calendar?view=calendar&month=January-2018
Also, in September, Expired Permits may also result in a Red – CLOSED placard. Make sure you submit your renewal in plenty of time!!
Here is the press release on all the new regulations. https://health.hawaii.gov/san/files/2017/09/DOH-Press-Release_amended-CH-50-signed.pdf
An MSDS Update
The HIOSH has informed me that while your MSDS binders need to be complete and up-to-date, old and unused sheets should be archived for at least THIRTY years.
To learn more detail about Food Safety procedures, or to set up an independent discounted audit of your facility, please contact Peter Bellisario of Peter B Food Safety Audits at firstname.lastname@example.org or (808)491-7766. Check out my new website – PeterBFoodsafety.com