There has to be a pain point, a bit like an irritating itch that won’t go away, for a food business to need my help. The trigger can be simply worrying about when the EHO is going to walk through the door. Alternatively the dreaded phone call from a customer
‘I think you gave me food poisoning!!’
Let’s face it there is a lot to think about when you are running a food business – the menu, the staff (or lack of them), allergens, marketing, filling the tables on a quiet Tuesday evening (or any evening really) and so it goes on. Food safety underpins everything you do as a food business owner as getting it wrong really isn’t an option.
Food Safety Culture
My blog Does food safety culture matter? explains that food safety must be embedded in the day to day operations of a business. Sometimes referred to as ‘What we do around here’. It can result in less food safety incidents and greater food safety assurance. Also increased customer satisfaction if you get it right – and who wouldn’t want that? BUT the food safety policies and procedures must be relevant to what you do and be there in the first place for the staff to follow until it becomes second nature.
This is where I can help and wherever possible I try to get staff involved in the work I do from Day 1. Firstly to find out what procedures are in place and secondly, if they are being followed. If not, why not? Do improvements or changes need to be made to staff can do things more easily and quickly?
Case study – St. John’s College (SJC)
I first started working with SJC over 2 years ago. This very valuable trusted relationship started with a message on Linkedin to the Catering Operations Manager
‘Does your company need a food safety health check?’
My first visit to SJC took nearly an entire day, which was way over my estimated ‘couple of hours’. A learning curve for me in running my business. During the day I visited the kitchens and chatted with the staff and managers. I identified the ‘pain points’ being:
- each kitchen was using a different food safety system making it challenging to manage day-to-day
- staff training needed updating
- a FHRS 5 on their next EHO visit
From this initial visit I put together the following action plan:
- Design a food safety management system for SJC to include all 5 individual kitchens
- Include relevant updates on allergen management, acrylamide and other food safety policies
- Design a daily paper diary template for each kitchen to record their monitoring checks
- Deliver online and face to face training to update staff’s knowledge and skills.
SJC have a FHRS 5 star rating and a food safety management system that reflects their operations.
In 2021 I delivered virtual COVID 19 refresher training and face to face food hygiene training. Then followed an annual review of their FSMS including allergen updates for Natasha’s Law.
They are also trailing my new kitchen daily diary, which is available as a web app, in two of their business units. The managers are giving me lots of invaluable feed back making sure it is fit for purpose for other clients.
Let me help solve the food safety pain points in your food business or if you would like to try the online kitchen daily diary on a 5 day free trial. please Contact me