Leadership Forum Members
Some hand washing stations are designed for nothing more than checking off the presence of a hand sink on a regulatory review form. When workers actually wash their hands they quickly discover a deterring inconvenience - no waste receptacle.
Convenient waste receptacles are an important component in an effective, sustainable hand hygiene process. They partner with paper towels to significantly impact hand hygiene.
Cleaner Surfaces. Safer Hands.
Frequently touched foodservice surfaces warrant watching more closely. They deserve having standards and a system to measure, monitor, motivate and manage. ATP, Adenosine Triphosphate, provides the chemistry for realtime measurement, providing a simple but memorable self-demonstration method for those charged with both periodic schedules and the clean-as-you-go staff. Its visual. Its personal. It gets done.
Surface cleaners and sanitizers protect the foodservice operator and staff in two important ways:
Proper use of quality, single-use gloves significantly lowers the risk of foodborne illness.
Healthy Hands are Easier to CleanSmooth, healthy hands are important to foodservice workers and important to the people they serve. Healthy smooth skin is easier to clean and keep clean.
The trail of invisible hand-prints supports touch-free and demands higher surface cleanliness standards.
Cleanliness standards are a critical element considered in designing and selecting equipment for both kitchen and customer space. However, these standards are dominated by noble words rather than science-based facts. Easy to clean is one common standard and the second is Clean to sight and touch. These verbal descriptors seemingly served us well in a world of stainless steel, smooth, easy-to-clean designs and easier to control bacteria.
Breakthrough Norovirus-effective Formulation Now Commercially Available
The use of Food Code compliant alcohol hand sanitizers in Foodservice has been suppressed for years by relatively low effectiveness on their number one cause of foodborne outbreaks, norovirus. Formulations deploying new synergists potentiate the alcohol base and more than triple its predesessor products' effectiveness. It is more than 10 times more effective than the thin liquid versions. The foodservice market now has a very effective and convenient option which is also skin friendly.
How to keep norovirus and hep A in the restroom and off the menu.
Norovirus and hep A continue to plague foodservice operations. Our understanding of norovirus, the leading cause of foodborne outbreaks, has been hampered by our ability to isolate the pathogen and pursue laboratory research. This void is rapidly being filled by studies conducted at Emory University and North Carolina State.
The Viral Ports of Call. Establish the ill customer and ill employee blockade.
Imagine a blockade to keep virus out of the restaurant, a first line of defense.
Convenient & Effective. Formulation Really Matters.
Alcohol sanitizers are proven boosters to hand cleanliness in the foodservice arena. Not dependent on residual chemicals to kill pathogens, alcohol hand sanitizers do not carry the risk of possible food contamination and do not build microbial resistance.
Well formulated alcohol sanitizers have controlled-release systems which help spread the alcohol and hold it in place for maximum effectiveness. Emollients, skin's moisture maintainers, take over as a final protective action.
(Watch for an (important addition this week, comparing ten leading formulations.)
Wins in Effectiveness & Speed
Paper towels, single-use paper towels, are the clear Best Practice for hand drying in the fast paced professional food handling environment. They are both effective and fast, the two critical elements of choice.
Electric hand dryers have NO PLACE in food areas (see data and test results), mainly because they are neither effective nor fast. Most users walk away with wet hands and wet hands transfer bacteria 500 times more readily than dry hands. Others wipe them dry on aprons and other soiled surfaces. This can lead to reactivating dormant bacteria and re-igniting a chain of cross-contamination. Pathogens thrive in wet, warm conditions. Wet hands are also a source of accidental knife injuries and increase the dangers of dropping glassware and hot food.
Breaking the Fecal-Hand-Oral Chain with "The Doubler"
The best implement to wash a hand is the other hand. (See the Core Handwash.) Brushless hand washing is the standard. However, there are limitations. In the case of handwashing, the use of a nail brush in select situations is often essential for effective cleaning.
Proper use of a Best Practice nailbrush can double the cleaning power. Friction is an important factor in hand cleansing. It helps penetrate and remove biofilms. It is better to use a good nailbrush in high soil situations rather than selecting an aggressive handsoap.
The "immeasurables" make the difference
Best practice handwashing requires skin-friendly deep-cleaning soap and a reliable, easy-to-see/service, touch-free dispenser. Integrated technologies are setting the pace in advancing the science of handwashing. Best-In-Class solutions are a good place to start before making potentially costly compromises.
This combination encourages staff handwashing, lowering the risk of an outbreak and protecting customer health as well as operator brand values. This breed of soap system serves the frequent-washer with good cleaning and fast rinsing in order to protect the health of their skin. Savings of time and water are commonly available when specifying quality systems based first on performance rather than the soap's price per liter or gallon. The Purell dispensers are now monitoring enabled to connect with multiple data gathering/reporting technologies. When the data cartridge is onboard, this is referred to as a SmartLink™ dispenser.
Direct costs of soap by the liter vary widely. The best choice is often the one that most effectively covers the range of “immeasurables" like never running out of soap, providing staff motivation to wash, saving operational time (wash and rinse times), reducing employee absenteeism, increasing dispenser reliability and saving water.
Soap systems to avoid:
1. Refillable dispensers commonly harbor bacteria and are nearly impossible to clean once contaminated.
2. All soaps with unreliable delivery. Dispenser issues deter frequent handwashing.
3. Soap dispensers where it is difficult to see fill level and challenging to change cartridge/bag.
4. Harsh soaps. Where extra cleaning is sought, extend the wash time or use a nailbrush.
5. Strong smelling soaps as they too deter frequent use.
6. Bar soap.
Note: “Brushless Carwash” type automatic handwash systems must be tested for full soil removal. These options lack the hand-to-hand friction necessary for good cleaning. They are acceptable where light-duty cleaning is specified.
Effective hand soap > more frequent handwashing > less risk of illness
Liquid or Foam
Well formulated hand soaps, liquid and foam, provide both effective cleaning and an incentive to wash frequently.
Failure on either point cuts compliance levels and raises operator risk. Pre-foamed hand soap spreads quickly and evenly. Its cling factor holds the cleaning power in place, reducing waste, consumption and potential skin irritation. Ease of thorough rinsing and general aesthetics are preferred by food workers, encouraging frequent use. Others prefer liquids, particularly in operations where heavy soil conditions prevail. Whether you prefer liquid or foam delivery systems, insure the product selected delivers these desired results.
Stages of a Crisis
- Establish strict procurement and hygiene standards
- Anticipate a worst case scenario and plan for it
- Act quickly and responsibly; the longer a crisis lasts the more damaging it becomes financially and to your business reputation
When Safety Systems Fail
The risk of foodborne Illness will never be zero.
The most critical step to manage risk is the development and implementation of a comprehensive hand hygiene program tailored to your operation and your tolerance for risk.
Building an enduring hand hygiene system depends on objectivity and broad based experience.
“If my hands look clean, they are clean.” WRONG!
The invisible threats of the microbial world are easy to ignore.
Track and Validate Team Performance
An effective, enduring hand hygiene process is the result of management diligence and a commitment to continuous improvement. Documentation of the total process is critical. Periodic adjustments and new ideas are necessary to sustain effectiveness in the dynamic environment of the professional kitchen. Improvement is always possible when results are measured.
Making handwashing easier, faster and safer ... makes handwashing happen!
Convenience and reliability drive handwashing compliance. Hand sinks are the core of most hand hygiene stations but it's the matching of complementary components that define a best practice choice. Frequent use is the goal of the savvy design consultant, not a minimum to pass the Plan Review.
Priority surfaces earn special attention. Cleaner surfaces, cleaner hands, safer food.
Hand hygiene is first thought of in terms of handwashing. But when setting standards for the frequency to achieve a Safe Level of handwashing you quickly realize the importance of clean surfaces. Cleaner surfaces protect hand cleanliness and proper use of food handling accessories minimize the need for handwashing.
Globally recognized for their ease of use in any language. Available in DVD and MP4 file download.
Newsletter Sign Up
Subscribe to our mailing list for news & up-to-date information.