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Restaurant & Kitchen Safety Tips

Posted on 03/21 by Erin Helms

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It’s the job of everyone in the kitchen, from the cooks and chefs to the server running plates out to hungry customers, to make sure food is handled safely and stored properly. Here are some restaurant and kitchen safety tips to help protect yourself, your coworkers and customers alike.

Know Proper Food Cooking Temperatures

The USDA is responsible for the safety of meat, poultry and egg products and has devised a an internal cooking temperature guideline which should be posted at or near your cook station. Foods not cooked to these temperatures can spread illness-causing bacteria, and make customers sick. Do not base a product’s doneness by color or feel; it is only with a digital thermometer that proper cooking temperature can be confirmed.

Use The Right Tool for The Job

There is a right tool for every job in the kitchen but the most important one is your ability to take a moment and consider safety hazards before moving forward hastily and causing injury to yourself or others.

Wear The Proper Clothing and Footwear

Restaurants require non-slip, rubberized soles because high-traffic areas might become slippery. One person falling in a kitchen might knock over boiling water, sizzling pans, pots of hot liquid and other hazards that not only create messes but can hurt bystanders. Similarly, it’s important for people to wear proper clothing, from aprons to hairnets and gloves to prevent items from falling into prepared dishes and the transferal of bacteria into entrees.

Keep Your Knives Sharp and Handle Them Properly

Dull knives not only mean it will take longer to chop vegetables and meats, it can also increase the risk of cuts and infections. It’s important to know how to sharpen knives properly as needed and how to put them away in the right places to avoid breaking or dulling the blade or chipping the handle.

Watch The Flames

Know where all fire extinguishers are kept and make sure they are up to date. Never throw water on a grease fire; make sure everyone in the kitchen is trained to handle kitchen fires to keep them contained quickly and safely. Do not leave lit burners unattended and always use protection when grabbing a hot pot or pan to avoid burns and scalding.

Be Smart When Moving Heavy Objects

This includes lifting with your knees, not your back; relying on slip-resistant floor mats; using hand trucks and asking for help when carrying or moving heavy boxes of supplies and properly storing those same items in areas where they can be accessed easily without further strain.

Keep The Clutter to a Minimum

There’s so much movement and activity in kitchens that there can be no room for error when it comes to keeping everything tucked neatly away. Avoid using long cords whenever possible as they pose a tripping hazard. Keep your workspace tidy to eliminate the risk of clothes, aprons or other people getting caught on your tools.

Wash Your Hands

At the start of your shift, the end of your shift, after touching raw meat or poultry and any time they might be dirty or contaminated, unless your kitchen adopts other safety measures for preventing the contamination of raw food. Always wash your hands after using the restroom. So many germs are passed by hand-to-mouth contact and washing your hands is a simple and effective way to reduce the risk.

LaborMAX is Your Partner For Restaurant Staff

Whether you’re a new server, a seasoned chef or something in between, food safety is everyone’s responsibility! For help finding a job in a kitchen or to help fill out your cooking staff, contact LaborMAX today.

Tagged: #RestaurantSafety #LineCookJobs #RestaurantStaffing

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