You just survived your rush hour. Business was booming. Your customers were happy and employees were having fun while they worked. You consider it a great success. Although you just had a successful shift, the place is a disaster. The bathrooms are a wreck, the make table is a mess, and both the walk-in refrigerator and freezer have been open more than closed to keep up with the demand, raising the core temperatures of both. Just when you start to catch your breath and begin to pick up after the rush, the health inspector strolls through your front door. Now what?
It’s no secret that the health inspector is the most feared person by those in the restaurant industry. This person possesses the power to either bolster your reputation or decimate it. A health inspection can be stressful, but they are a necessary part of ensuring a safe environment for employees and customers. Let’s talk about what is involved in a health inspection and a few of the things they are looking for.
- Pests: Don’t fall behind in scheduling preventive maintenance of pests. This accounts for 20% of your overall health inspection score!
- Cross Contamination: bacteria from raw meat can be left on surfaces and utensils if they are not properly cleaned and sanitized. Also, make sure that food is properly stored and labeled. Meat should also be thawed properly so that it is safe to prepare and serve.
- Handwashing: Ensure that employees are washing their hands before and after preparing food, using the bathroom, etc. Also, keeping the bathrooms fully stocked with soap and paper towels is important.
- Temperature: Make sure that your thermometers are working properly and ensure that your foods are not in the danger zone, preventing bacteria growth.
Luckily, if you get bad marks for minor violations you will get a chance to fix them. Hopefully, next time the health inspector won’t show up right after rush hour. But, if they do, make sure what you can control is perfect!