In the restaurant industry, one of the most important aspects of making your business successful is starting strong with the basics. By building a solid foundation of basic principles such as maintaining a clean environment, friendly staff, and of course, delicious food, your business is bound to succeed. Today we will be focusing on that initial point—a clean environment.

The importance of maintaining a clean and healthy environment in your kitchen cannot be overstated enough. Restaurants can still function even with lethargic staff or subpar cuisine, but without a clean bill of health, all operations must cease. The goal of this article today is to educate managers and business owners alike on how to keep their kitchens pristine.

 Set routines and expectations

Setting the proper routines and expectations for your team can make every difference in cultivating a clean environment. Routines are essential, especially in the hectic environment of a commercial kitchen that prepares hundreds of meals each day. One way management can establish a routine is by creating a task list that must be completed before locking up for the night—this list should include items such as cleaning the flooring and dishes, proper sanitization, and removing trash along with any expiring or excess food. Of course, other tasks can be added depending on the size of your kitchen; these are just a few examples.

Staff can and should be included in these routines in order to distribute the workload evenly. In addition, if everyone is trained on the cleaning routine it can be completed regardless of who is or isn’t on staff that day. With this in mind, let’s review expectations. Business owners need to establish clear-cut expectations for all staff regarding how the kitchen should be cleaned and maintained. Without concise expectations, the term “clean” can, unfortunately, become open to interpretation. Be proactive by setting routines and expectations that can be easily followed by all team members.

Be aware of cross-contamination

Forming in-depth routines and expectations is just the start of establishing a healthy kitchen. Another important element to consider regarding your commercial kitchen’s health is cross-contamination. The term “cross-contamination” refers to the movement of harmful bacteria from one place to the next. Bacteria can be transferred in a variety of different ways—one of the most common being on cleaning supplies. Cleaning equipment should be strictly labeled for what areas of the building they are designated for. Supplies used for the kitchen should never be used in restrooms or outdoor areas.

This brings us back to the crucial element of establishing clear expectations for staff, as cross-contamination can compromise an entire restaurant. Proper sanitation and labeled supplies are a must in preventing the spread of foodborne illnesses. Employees should be frequently washing their hands in between tasks, and, of course, wearing the appropriate attire for each chore.

Deep clean tile and grout

Now that we have established the importance of proper routines and set expectations, as well as the dangers of cross-contamination, we must discuss flooring. More specifically, tile and grout, and how it can be a significant factor in your business’s health inspections. Flooring is one of the most overlooked and neglected parts of not only commercial kitchens but a variety of business locations. Take a moment to consider how much foot traffic takes place, as well as the amount of food that is inevitably dropped onto the kitchen floor. A quick mopping is simply not enough to effectively remove built-up grime, odor, and discoloration. This is where our team here at SaniGLAZE steps in to help—consider scheduling a deep cleaning to make your flooring new again. In addition to removing accumulated grime, sealants can be applied to protect your company’s most valuable asset from everyday use. Even in the most hectic of kitchens, our technicians can work with you to create a healthy and clean environment that is sure to pass any health inspection with flying colors.