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Hygiene and Cleanliness in Restaurants

Whenever we enter a restaurant to dine, we generally take for granted that the particular establishment is up to par in respect of cleanliness and hygiene. Therefore, we relax and enjoy the delicious meals presented by the hopefully kind and courteous staff. Most of us, even if we have a tinge of doubt about hygiene and cleanliness of the restaurant, we never really question same. But perhaps, we should because there are definite Guidelines and Rules that the restaurant service should adhere to in regards to hygiene and cleanliness. Some of the main ones are:


The Washing of Hands is mandatory in the restaurant service. Employees should carry out this practice:

– After using the restroom so as not to transport fecal germs to kitchen

– After sneezing, coughing, smoking eating and drinking

– Immediately before serving food

– In the preparing between meats and vegetables.

– Gloves – this is not a substitute for washing hands

The common places on the body for germs/bacteria to live are the hair, finger nails and skin. Therefore, it is imperative that employees in the service should cover the hair with a hat or net in order to prevent hair from entering food. Finger nails should be kept trimmed. Enough clothing should be worn so as not to expose the arm. Aprons should be kept cleaned and changed regularly as they soil very easily. In addition, the apron should be removed when entering the restroom. Make-up, jewlery and perfrume should be worn and used on a minimal basis . These rules and practices aid in the decrease or elimination of food-borne illness and ultimately protect employees and patrons.

In addition, each employee should possess a Food Handler’s Permit which should be displayed on the wall. A person with serious or acute respiratory infection or worker with open sores, boils or wonds should not be handling food. If any employee is tested positive for infectious illnesses like Hepititis or any other then this should be reported to the to the Local Health Department.


All foods should be stored at the correct temperature in walk-in freezer and regular refrigerator. To prevent cross contamination, the preparation area should be kept clean at all times. Care most be taken to use separate utencils, platters, chopping boards and knives when preparing vegetables and meat , fish or poultry.

After cooking, food that is not immediately served should be stored at the correct temperatures. Utencils should be utilized at all times for the handling of cooked foods.


One of the main areas to be maintained is the Kitchen Hood. This is necessary for proper airflow in the kitchen. In addition, it prevents fire hazards, thus providing a safe environment for patrons and employees. It is imperative when having this done to use the services of a professional who is licensed and certified. If left undone, the Fire Department could fine establishment or worse, business could be closed for violations.

The washing of floors is a necessity so as to provide a slick-free surface. Also, a daily maintence of toilets, tables, and utencils, ovens and stoves to decrease the spread of germs.

There are quite a number of guidelines involved in running a restaurant service in respect of hygiene and cleanliness. One way to do this is to follow a Checklist of Rules and Guidelines. It is vital that Management provide the right training for employees and parties involved so as to constanly keep abreast with same. After a while, they do become second nature.