Cleaning and Sanitizing in Foodservice Operations
Cleaning removes visible solids while sanitizing reduces pathogens on surfaces to safe levels. This video describes proper cleaning and sanitizing procedures.
- [Gary] Proper cleaning and sanitizing are important when it comes to keeping food safe.
All surfaces that come in contact with food such as tabletops, cutting boards, knives, and other equipment and utensils must be cleaned and sanitized after use.
Cleaning removes physical soils such as food particles and oily residue.
Sanitizing reduces the amount of bacteria or germs on a surface to safe levels.
A food surface must be cleaned before it can be correctly sanitized.
A dirty surface cannot be sanitized.
First, prior to washing, large food particles must be removed from the surface through soaking, scraping, or scrubbing.
Then the surface must be cleaned or washed in detergent or water.
Water temperature should be 110 degrees Fahrenheit with the appropriate concentration of detergent.
After cleaning, the surface is rinsed using clean potable water.
The goal is to remove all remaining detergent.
Once the surface is rinsed, it can now be sanitized.
Common sanitizers include chlorine bleach and quaternary ammonia compounds or quats.
To use chlorine bleach as a sanitizer, it must be first diluted to the appropriate concentration which is less than 100 parts per million.
Using regular strength bleach, which is 5.25 to 6% sodium hypochlorite, mix one teaspoon per quart of water or one tablespoon per gallon of water.
It is important to make sure the bleach can be used in food applications and that it is unscented.
Be sure to use measuring spoons and a measuring cup.
Don't just eyeball the amounts.
This is a very precise ratio that must be followed closely.
Too much or too little chlorine means that the item or surface will not be properly sanitized.
It is also important to check the final concentration of the solution with a test strip.
Water quality including hardness and pH can affect the final concentration.
When using this solution in bottles, it is important to remember that the solution will only remain active for 24 hours.
Therefore, only mix an amount that can be used for not longer than one day.
Discard any chlorine bleach solution that is older than one day.
You can apply this solution with a spray bottle or use a clean cloth to wipe surfaces.
If you use a bottle, be sure to label the contents.
When using wiping cloths, be sure to store those cloths in a pale of sanitizing solution between uses.
After the sanitizing solution is applied, allow the surface to air dry.
This will provide time for the sanitizer to do its job.
Never wipe dry a surface.
This may reintroduce contaminants.
When using quaternary ammonia or other chemical sanitizers, it is important to follow manufacturer's instructions.
And remember, food surfaces must first be cleaned and rinsed before they can be sanitized.
Frequently Asked Questions