By using advanced cleaning systems, you can quickly and thoroughly clean your workplace surfaces. But if your employee cleanliness policies are lacking, the time and effort you spend cleaning these spaces will be wasted. If your employees don't follow basic health codes, they will unknowingly spread bacteria around different surfaces. Here are some ways that you can prevent cross-contamination in the workplace.
Unfortunately, few new employees really know how to wash their hands correctly. It may seem silly to teach your crew how to wash up properly, but if you don't, your employees could spread germs around your entire workplace. Here are the basic steps involved in effective hand washing:
- Rinse your hands under very warm water.
- Add enough soap to fully lather your hands.
- Rub your hands together, making sure to scrub all surface areas, including the backs of your hands and between your fingers.
- Continue washing for a full 20 seconds (sing the "Happy Birthday" song to yourself, twice).
- Rinse the soap from your hands thoroughly with very warm water.
- Dry your hands using a dryer or a disposable paper towel.
Some food workers think that they can't contaminate any food if they are wearing gloves, but this is not always the case. There are certain glove-wearing procedures that must be followed to fully prevent the spread of bacteria. For example, employees should always wash their hands before putting on gloves. This will help to prevent cross-contamination if a glove rips.
In addition, every time workers change jobs, like when they go from hot to cold food or from cooking to serving, they need to rewash their hands and put on a fresh pair of gloves. State health department regulations on nail polish vary, but if your workers color their nails, they should also be wearing gloves at all times to prevent chips from falling into the food.
In order to prevent foreign objects from falling into served food, all food workers should dress in a particular manner. As a precautionary measure, all jewelry, except for plain wedding bands, should be left at home or in a locker. Earrings and necklaces can break and fall into food, and stones in rings can loosen and become lost.
All food workers with long hair should be required to tie their hair back. You should ban the use of hairpins, as they can fall into the food, as well. Depending on your state regulations, workers may have to wear hairnets or hats when preparing and serving food. Check with your local health department to make sure you're complying with all of the applicable laws, and always make sure that employee cleanliness is a top priority of your business.
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