How to make health inspections easy.
Recently a wave of TV shows and films, such as Boiling Point and The Bear have highlighted the hectic and fast-paced environment of working in a commercial kitchen. Stephen Graham’s character in Boiling Point is faced head-on with a health inspection and it couldn’t come at a more unwelcome time, the busiest night of the year. But do health inspections come served with a plate of worries and a side of stress? It definitely doesn’t have to be the case. As long as you know what health inspectors are looking for, stay calm during the visit and run a tight ship, you’ll be fine. And, there are a few technical things that can help ease the stress too. Read on to find out more.
When does a health inspection take place?
A health inspection can happen at any time and without prior notice. Usually health inspections take place around every six months. If a customer has complained that will trigger a health inspection visit.
What are health inspectors looking for?
Ultimately health inspectors for knowledge from your managers and staff. Restaurant owners are required to know all of the local health codes. Management is required to have all up-to-date training on food safety and all restaurant employees must demonstrate knowledge of safe food handling and preparation.
When the inspector arrives they will observe and ask questions to test the staff’s knowledge. They will want to see temperature readings, food safety logs, checklists and understand how the kitchen is managed.
How to make health inspections easy
The first thing to do is ensure your staff are well trained. With the Phenium app you can upload all your Standard Operating Procedures so that everyone in your team has access to them, anytime.
It’s vital that you and your team stay up to date with knowledge, new technologies and anything that can help mitigate risk in the kitchen.
It goes without saying that you need to ensure checklists, cleaning, and temperature reading are up to date and being regularly monitored. Again, Phenium can do this for you. Our smart sensors will read the temperature of your cooling or holding equipment. In fact, we can record up to 1500 temperature checks every day. We can also create automated food safety temperature logs so you don’t need to keep a paper record of every check you make.
Another great idea is to conduct your own health inspections on a regular basis, that way everyone knows what to be aware of when a real visit takes place and how to make them as stress-free as possible.
Case studies: What happens when something goes wrong?
Here at Phenium we are always working to ensure high food safety standards are kept. We know our customers rely on our technology to ace their health inspections.
A source from one of our long-serving customers described an incident where an employee placed warm soup in a fridge during a health inspector’s visit.
‘The soup was too hot, but because all records and temps were recorded, it was clear it was just human error and one mistake, not a wider problem, so no further action was taken from the health inspector,’ he said.
Another customer of ours, who managed operations across multiple locations, heard the health inspector had arrived, so he rushed over to the restaurant.
‘The health inspector had checked all our records and was so satisfied he left before I even arrived,’ he confirmed.