No one likes to spend more time than they have to cleaning. We all know the mantra …. “Clean as you go”!! But sometimes there just never seems enough time in the day to really clean it all.
Here’s a few tips to help everyone keep on top of the cleaning tasks in a busy kitchen.
- Have a plan – also known as a cleaning schedule. List out the items that need to be cleaned, when, how and by whom. This way everyone knows who must clean what Get the shift supervisor or section head to check the standard of cleaning after its been completed.
- You may wish to break the schedule down further into daily, weekly and monthly or deep clean tasks. Plan the work when you have quieter times i.e. fridges when stocks are low.
- You may have night cleaning staff so ensure all food and equipment is cleared away ready. Time spent doing this by the cleaning staff is less time for cleaning!
- CLEANING is the removal of food, visible dirt and debris from surfaces, equipment and fittings using hot water, detergent and energy i.e. scrubbing (elbow grease!) Makes sure there is a good supply of cleaning equipment mops, cloths etc to do the job properly. You’ll also need to have enough staff and time to do clean properly.
- Make sure the correct cleaning chemicals are provided and staff know which one s to use for the right job. So, what do you need?
- DETERGENT OR WASHING UP LIQUID. This is good for removing left over food residues and grease but it does not kill germs.
- DISINFECTANT this should be used after general cleaning has a taken place and will help remove germs to a safe level but the surface has to be cleaned first.
- SANITISERS these clean and disinfect and are good for equipment and work surfaces. Sanitisers can be used to both clean and disinfect as part of a two-stage approach. First use the sanitiser to clean the surface, removing any dirt food or grease. Re-apply to the visibly clean surface and leave for the required time to disinfect the surface.
They can be bought ready to use in trigger bottles or in bulk which usually need to be diluted. They rely on a contact time with the surface in order to work effectively. It is important that the contact time is known by staff. Sanitisers that have been tried and tested will have the BS EN 1296 and/or BS EN 13697 written on them.
- CONTACT TIME This is the time that the sanitiser needs to be on the surface in order to kill bacteria. Be careful when choosing which one to use as the contact time can range from 30 seconds to 5 minutes!
- TWO STAGE CLEANING PROCESS This is the term used when washing up by hand in a sink and involves:
Step 1. General cleaning using a detergent which will physically remove any visible dirt, debris and food particles from surfaces and equipment.
Step 2. Disinfection which involves using a disinfectant following the manufacturers dilution and contact time carefully. Heat such as immersing the equipment into very hot water >82C for at least 15 seconds may also be used.
If you use this method, it is best to have two sinks one for washing and one for rinsing.
- COMMERCIAL DISHWASHERS these have two cycles the wash and rinse. Wash temperatures should be over 60C and the final rinse water should be at or above 82C. Your local EHO may ask if you check this temperature regularly or have a quarterly service contract
REMEMBER: Using the wrong chemical for the wrong job can be expensive!!