Cleaning: food safety tips

Effective cleaning is essential to get rid of harmful bacteria in your kitchen and to stop them spreading. The tips in this section will help you to be sure that you and your staff are cleaning properly.

All food contact surfaces (such as preparation surfaces, cutting boards, pots, pans and utensils) and all hand contact surfaces (such as door and cupboard handles, bin lids, taps) should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected at regular intervals to prevent the build up of contamination around food areas.

How to keep track of cleaning

A cleaning schedule is a good way to make sure that surfaces and equipment are cleaned when they need to be. Work out what needs cleaning every day, or more than once a day, and what needs cleaning less frequently. Your schedule should show:

  • what needs to be cleaned
  • who is responsible for doing the cleaning
  • how often it needs to be done
  • how the cleaning should be done
  • what to do if the person checking the cleaning finds something wrong

You could also prepare cleaning instructions for your staff showing:

  • what cleaning chemicals should be used
  • how the chemicals should be used, including how much they should be diluted and how long they should be left on the surface, as recommended by the manufacturer
  • how the chemicals should be stored (in a special place away from food)

A member of staff should be made responsible for checking that cleaning is being done properly. Cleaning record sheets can help them record what they observe.

When they make the check they should write down whether the cleaning has been done properly. If there are any problems they should make a note of what they did to put them right.