When you’re creating delicious food for hundreds (perhaps thousands!) of customers each week, there’s nothing quite so important as food safety. These days, food service is steeped in regulation, making it harder to let things lapse. That said, there are still plenty of opportunities to rethink your storage and make sure your commercial kitchen is running a really tight ship.
1// Store food in airtight containers. Yes, this might be a no-brainer, but did you know as soon as air touches food it begins to spoil? Invest in air-lock containers and put lids on your pans to keep things safe.
2// Food that’s in first is out first. The FIFO rule is so important to keep food fresh, organised and reduce food waste. When new stock arrives, simply place it behind the current stock, with a clear use-by-date label.
3// Keep it off the floor. Store food around 12 inches up is recommended to avoid water or dust damage. Wall shelving and units can help organise and levitate containers. This also makes it easy to clean underneath everything.
4// Store meat as low as possible. Meat can breed bacteria and can be highly dangerous if it contaminates other food. Storing meat at the bottom means any juices won’t drip into other containers.
5// Keep shelves and floors organised. Not only does this help to keep things spic and span, but all the team can quickly and easily find food if there’s a decent system in place. Make sure everyone knows the score.
6// Don’t overload the fridge. If it’s stuffed to the brim it will work too hard to keep everything a low temp and also create danger zones that aren’t cold enough. The air vents could also become blocked, jeopardising the safety of the entire fridge contents.
7// Keep close tabs on temperature control. Your fridge must have a thermometer and staff need to monitor it daily.
8// If in doubt, throw it out. Never, ever risk it. If you suspect that the food may be too old or contaminated, throw it out straight away.