Food and sanitation

In 2012, according to the New York City Department of Health, restaurant health code violations will produce $48 million in fines. Even in one of the great cities of the world, there are a lot of ways people can get sick eating prepared food.

The Centers for Disease Control cite eight pathogens for most instances of foodborne illness, hospitalizations and deaths. We’re all familiar with food recalls and people sickened by fruit and meat. As a manager of a restaurant, you should have a food protection certificate. But you’re not there every minute of every day…so, do others in your establishment have a food protection certificate? Or are you exposing yourself to a violation or worse, someone getting sick.

As a holder of a food protection certificate, you’re sure that all meats are kept on the lowest shelves in your refrigeration units to prevent dripping on other foodstuffs. A food protection certificate holder knows that refrigeration impedes bacterial growth, but doesn’t stop it. And after food safety certification, you certainly don’t allow employees to eat and drink in the kitchen because you know that’s a health code violation.

Just how proficient are your employees in good food and sanitation practices? How many have taken food safety courses…and when? Is training to acquire a food protection certificate even offered to your employees? If not, why not? Is restaurant food safety emphasized in your restaurant? Do you train your people on the proper ways of handling food?

A food protection certificate alone won’t ward off a fine or prevent someone from getting sick. What are you doing to make sure you know who has been trained, when, and how effectively?

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