What does HACCP mean in catering?

What does HACCP mean in catering?

You’re probably already aware that HACCP involves controlling supplies and ingredients coming into a catering business and what is done with them thereafter. However, in this blog, we’re going to break this down further, taking a closer look at what HACCP means in catering.

Who does it affect?

Catering businesses which will require a plan based on the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) principle include premises serving food, such as hotels, public houses, restaurants, takeaways, sandwich bars, coffee shops and street vendors. However, it also extends to outside catering companies, hospitals and any other institution with catering operations.

The approach used by HACCP on food safety concentrates a caterer’s attention on the causes of food safety hazards. Allowing a caterer to control and identify safety hazards, there are 7 principles to follow, including conducting a hazard analysis, establishing critical limits and establishing corrective action.

The basic practices of safety in catering

Let’s take a look at some best practices to bear in mind if you work in catering or own a catering company.

Proper storage of foodstuffs

Arranging food properly in the fridge reduces the rate of spoiling and contamination. Ready to eat food should be stored on the top two shelves (dairy at the top then cooked food below), followed by raw meat and fish in sealed containers. The most important rule is to follow is to store raw products below, never above, your ready-to-eat or cooked products.

Maintaining optimum fridge/freezer temperatures

Many kinds of food items need to be stored in a fridge or freezer to keep them fresh and safe to consume. A catering fridge should be kept below 5 degrees Celsius and freezers should be maintained at -17.7 degrees Celsius as most of the microbes that cause contamination of refrigerated food cannot thrive under these conditions.

Inspecting employee hygeine

Not only does food have to be thoroughly inspected, but employees who prepare and serve it need to be too. Caterers should not wear artificial nails or have uncovered hair when working around food. Their clothing should be clean and replaced if it becomes dirty.

For the purposes of maintaining high standards of food safety, every stage in the food production process should be carried out with due diligence. Magna Food Health and Safety can provide you with more information on HACCP – get in touch here to find out more.