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Food Safety Training after COVID-19

About food hygiene and safety

Food hygiene covers the process of correctly preparing, handling and storing food to prevent foodborne illness. The food we eat makes a long journey from farms to factories to supermarket shelves.

Food products may come across a number of health hazards while they are being processed and packaged. It’s essential to practice safe food handling during every step of this process. It prevents food from being exposed to harmful bacteria and poor hygiene practices.

Food businesses that prepare and serve food must also uphold high standards. Restaurant and pub kitchens should:

  • Be regularly and thoroughly cleaned.
  • Prevent cross-contamination of raw and cooked food products.
  • Ensure high standards of personal hygiene among team members.
  • Ensure correct cooking temperatures are maintained to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.
  • Be aware of the most common food allergens and how to prevent cross-contamination.
  • Ensure the safe storage of food products.

Food safety after COVID-19

COVID-19 has had a huge impact on all industries and how they conduct their business. Businesses that handle food have always had to take hygiene seriously. But, food safety during COVID-19 became even more serious. Food businesses had even more of a spotlight on them as they were one of the only businesses able to stay open to customers. It will surely be a top priority for all food businesses that are due to open when restrictions are lifted. It’s also something that customers will be actively looking out for.

Many people may have wondered if it’s safe to eat in a restaurant during the COVID-19 pandemic. These worries will no doubt continue for months to come. We’re all looking forward to dressing up and eating out. But the thought of other people handling and preparing food is naturally unnerving.

Good food hygiene practice is the best way for business owners to settle these fears and encourage people that eating out is safe. This can really help their businesses to bounce back and put the past year behind them.

The consequences of poor food safety

Failure to implement and follow good hygiene practices can result in hefty repercussions. First, there is a significant human cost involved. The Food Standards Agency estimates that around 2.4 million cases of foodborne illnesses occur every year in the UK. This might be caused by a variety of bacteria, viruses and parasites found in food. It could also be because of harmful toxins and chemicals that are not safe for human consumption.

Another reason for companies to take food safety seriously is the financial consequences. Customers may be able to sue cafes and restaurants that serve defective products. This is because restaurants have a legal responsibility to exercise reasonable care. This means providing a safe environment and producing safe meals. Failure to comply with these responsibilities can lead to financial payments made to the afflicted individuals and damage to the company’s reputation. This is not good for business, especially just after reopening!

What to consider when reopening food businesses after COVID-19

For restaurants and pubs, reopening after COVID-19 is going to pose many challenges. The first task will be managing the logistics of having people back inside the building. Tables might need rearranging to allow for social distancing. Regular hand sanitisation stations will need to be set up and one way systems carefully planned out.

Employees will need to feel comfortable returning to work. This means employers will have to stock up on a healthy supply of PPE. They can also help to restore confidence to their team by providing retraining before the opening date. As well as training that is legally required, such as fire safety and first aid, employees could also benefit from customer service skills and handling complaints training. The issues that might arise are likely to be new to many members of staff. They will need to be dealt with carefully and sensitively.

Finally, we would recommend that any food business enrols its team members in food safety training. This training is, of course, mandatory for chefs. But it may also be useful for every team member to know the best practices in handling food. This will help furloughed employees to feel more confident when they go back to work. Furthermore, customers will be pleased to see staff members showing good food safety practices.

Get your food safety certification

We have updated all of our workplace training courses to comply with the new COVID-19 regulations. Food safety training is no exception. Whether you have a small, family-run business or a large restaurant, our experienced instructors can provide your staff with thorough and informative training.

We strive to provide engaging and flexible training sessions. There’s nothing worse than someone reading off a script. This is why we make every effort to make all of our sessions unique. We offer a range of food safety and hygiene courses. These include basic food hygiene and diet, nutrition and hydration.

This training would be a good opportunity to bring everyone up to speed on the existing and new food hygiene regulations. This means that your whole team is on the same page from the get-go. For further details on our available courses or how we can customise a course for you, feel free to contact us today.

Book your food safety training today

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