The basic cleaning step in a kitchen revolves around cleaning and sanitising during the day and between various tasks. Cleaning and sanitising is one of the key ways to prevent bacteria from getting into foods. During which tasks is it important to clean and sanitise?
These tasks include :
Raw and ready-to-eat food preparation
Leaving your work station
This is commonly known as clean as you go.
Below are the steps to be followed when implementing cleaning and sanitising :
Remove excess dirt or grease
Spray on a multi-purpose cleaner
Wipe off with a clean material cloth
Spray on a sanitiser
Allow a sufficient contact time (3 – 5 minutes)
Wipe off with paper towel
Below is a link to a video showing how to clean and sanitise tables (clean as you go) :
This is the only proven method to remove dirt and kill bacteria. These steps need to be followed in the order set out, such that bacteria cannot hide behind dirt and grease, allowing a good contact time for the sanitiser to be effective.
Areas such as tables, cutting boards, slicers and blenders are all items that should have clean as you go procedures in place.
Using an approved supplier is also critical to the cleaning process. Chemicals, especially sanitisers should be registered and tested against your local or international standards. The sanitiser must be correctly diluted (ideally with an automatic dispenser), placed in a spray bottle with the nozzles adjusted to emit a fine mist.
Chemicals should also be correctly labelled at all times. The best chemical suppliers will also have various colours to easily distinguish the different chemicals during the clean as you go process.
Some suppliers have a 2-in-1 cleaner/disinfectant and advocate a 1-step Cleaning and Sanitising procedure. However be aware of this, as international best practice dictates a 2-step cleaning and sanitising. This would mean spraying the same chemical twice, once to clean and again to sanitise.
Regardless of the sanitiser used, it is extremely important to physically clean a surface before sanitising. This ensures that dirt and grease are removed, as bacteria can ‘hide’ behind these and discourage the sanitation process. It is also important to remember that the use of a clean material cloth must be used to do the cleaning, because the physical action of scrubbing is almost more effective in removing bacteria than the sanitiser.
The contact time for the sanitiser on a surface is also important, so be wary or suppliers who promise very short periods for sanitising, 3 – 5 minutes is reported as being the most effective.