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Food Safety in Commercial Kichens (Part Two)

Courtesy of SEFA Dealers and Suppliers

Food Preparation and Storage Equipment

 

The equipment in your kitchen should meet industry and regulatory standards. The following are some standard NSF requirements for food prep and storage equipment.

  • Food contact and food-splash surfaces must be easy to reach, easy to clean, nontoxic, nonabsorbent, corrosion resistant, non-reactive to food or cleaning and should not leave a color, odor or taste to food.
  • Should be rounded with tightly sealed edges and corners.
  • Should be designed with solid and liquid waste traps that are easy to remove.

Cross-Contamination

Cross contamination occurs when pathogens in one food are transferred to other foods that are not cooked or will not be cooked.

The most common carriers are:

  • Raw foods to ready-to-eat foods
  • Food-to-food contact
  • Cutting board
  • Utensils and dishes
  • Work surfaces and prep areas
  • Cleaning rags and dish towels
  • Hands

Prevention practices:

  • Store and prepare raw meats in separate areas from cooked and ready-to-eat foods
  • Dedicate specific cutting boards, utensils and containers to each food type
  • Finish one task, clean up and sanitize before starting another
  • Use dedicated, color-coded or disposable cleaning rags
  • In addition to soap and water, use approved sanitizers

Employees should be especially careful when working with:

  • Raw meat
  • Seafood
  • Eggs
  • Poultry
  • Shellfish

Proper Temperatures

Temp °F
212°Boiling point of water
165° - 212°Cooking temperatures destroy most bacteria. Time required to kill bacteria decreases as temperature is increased.
140° - 165°
Warming temperatures prevent growth but allow survival of some bacteria.

120° - 140°
Some bacterial growth may occur. Many bacteria survive.
60° - 120°Incubation zone. Temperatures in this zone allow rapid growth of bacteria and production of toxins by some bacteria. Foods should move through this temperature range as quickly as possible to avoid microbiological spoilage.
40° - 60°Some growth of food poisoning bacteria may occur.
32° - 40°
Cold temperatures permit slow growth of some bacteria that cause spoilage.
0° - 32°Freezing temperatures stop growth of bacteria, but may allow bacteria to survive.

Minimum Safe Internal Cooking Temperatures

  • POULTRY, STUFFED MEATS, STUFFED PASTAS--165°F (73.9°C) for 15 seconds; cook stuffing and meat first, then stuff the food.
  • GROUND BEEF AND PORK--155°F (68.3°C) for 15 seconds.
  • PORK, HAM, SAUSAGE, BACON--155°F (68.3°C) for 15 seconds.
  • BEEF ROASTS--145°F (62.8°C) for 15 seconds; 140°F (60°C) maintained for 12 minutes; or 130°F (54.4°C) maintained for 121 minutes.
  • FISH--145°F (62.8°C) for 15 seconds.

Consumer Confidence

According to a 1998 study from Restaurants & Institutions, the following factors were mentioned by food service consumers as influencing their confidence in the safety of food served by a restaurant:

  • Clean plates, glasses, silverware
  • Clean tables, tablecloths
  • Clean restrooms
  • Clean floors
  • Clean uniforms, aprons
  • Appropriateness of food temperature when served
  • Taste of food when eaten
  • How they feel after eating