Ways To Ensure Food Safety In A Corporate Canteen
Learn essential tips and best practices to ensure food safety in a corporate canteen. Discover the secrets to creating a healthy and safe work environment free from food-borne illnesses.
In India, any business that falls under the category of "Food Business" according to the Food Safety & Standards Act 2006 is legally required to get an FSSAI licence or certificate. This includes industrial canteens.
The FSSAI, or Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, enforces the regulations outlined in the Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006. This government agency operates at both the national and state levels, with local branches working closely with municipalities to ensure compliance with food safety standards through inspections and monitoring.
As a corporate canteen, it is necessary to get FSSAI approval to ensure that your food is hygienic, healthy and safe for human consumption. It will also show your dedication to maintaining food safety and protecting public health. In this article, we will explore how you can guarantee food safety in a corporate canteen.
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Ensuring Safe Eating In Corporate Canteens
1. Start Self-Monitoring
Self-monitoring plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety of food products. It involves regularly checking and verifying that a company's food handling practices meet established regulations and standards.
2. Start From The Source
Ensuring food safety in a corporate canteen starts from the source. This means that the first step in maintaining a safe and healthy food environment is carefully selecting suppliers and vendors who prioritise food safety and quality. By selecting suppliers who meet strict food safety standards and regularly reviewing their practices and certifications, a corporate canteen can ensure that the food they serve is safe and free of contaminants.
Additionally, the canteen should have a strict process of monitoring and inspecting the food items received, including checking the storage conditions, expiry dates, and packaging. This will help identify potential issues and address them before they become a problem. By starting from the source and making food safety a top priority, a corporate canteen can provide a safe and healthy environment for employees and customers.
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3. Manage Employee Performance Across Multiple Locations
Effective task management is crucial for seamless processes within a canteen. Monitoring within the kitchen is necessary so you can understand whether employees are following all the instructions given to maintain hygiene and health. It will also help employees with orientation, as you can instruct them with pre-determined processes for easier integration.
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4. Food And Appliance Temperature Monitoring
Utilising sensors and probes to collect data can enhance various aspects of food production, such as reducing waste, improving energy efficiency, and maintaining high food safety standards. Incorporating a digital food safety system ensures that all regulatory requirements are met, and that all records and measurements are easily traceable through electronic documentation. The system also sends immediate alerts for deviations via email or SMS, improving safety and simplifying health checks. These operational improvements can positively impact the company, authorities, and customers.
The data gathered from sensors and probes can also be used to identify areas for improvement in operations. For example, adjusting equipment operating temperatures to optimal levels can lower electricity consumption, reduce operating costs, and prolong the life of the equipment. The data collected can also optimise quality, efficiency, and safety.
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5. Train Your Team
The food industry presents a variety of potential hazards, such as sharp knives, hot water, and boiling oil, which means that being prepared for emergencies is crucial. This includes ensuring enough supplies in first aid stations for staff and guests to improve food safety.
If any food preparers are injured, it's essential to give them prompt attention and appropriate care and keep them away from food preparation areas. Additionally, it is essential for a company to frequently communicate food safety protocols to all employees and make sure that everyone has access to necessary hygiene products like disposable gloves and hair nets.
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6. Stay On Track With Proper Storage And Transport
Food should never be left out of the refrigerator for more than 2 hours in the temperature range between 4-60°C, as it becomes unsafe to consume and cannot be reheated or refrigerated. Eating food left out for too long can lead to food poisoning.
To ensure that food is safe to eat, it should be stored at the correct temperatures in airtight containers. Meat and poultry should be kept on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator to prevent any drips onto other foods. Additionally, hot and cold foods must be stored at appropriate temperatures during transportation.
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7. Prepare With Care
Preventing cross-contamination while handling food is crucial. Raw meats should be kept separate from cooked items, and different cutting boards should be used for vegetables and meats.
Clean and disinfect all surfaces and equipment after handling raw food, and wash them in hot, soapy water before each use. Frequently wash your hands and change gloves after each use. Do not prepare food too far in advance, and if it has been left out for too long or appears spoiled, discard it even if it looks and smells fine, as it can make people sick. Make sure to cook food at the appropriate temperature.
Food safety in the corporate canteen is of utmost importance. By following the guidelines and best practices discussed, not only can the food be safe for consumption, but it also ensures customer satisfaction and healthy eating.
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