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Must-Know Food Safety Regulations in the Food Industry

The food industry is one of the most heavily regulated industries in the United States. Food safety is a top priority for both the government and consumers. Food businesses must follow federal, state, and local regulations to ensure their products’ safety.

These regulations help prevent foodborne illness, a serious public health concern. Each year, there are an estimated 48 million cases of foodborne disease in the United States. Of these, about 3,000 result in death.

The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) is an essential federal regulation for food businesses. This law gives the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the authority to regulate food products. The FDA ensures that food products are safe, wholesome, and accurately labeled.

These are the food safety regulations for restaurants that every restaurant owner must know:

1) Food establishments must be licensed

Licensing is required for all food establishments that serve food to the public. This includes restaurants, caterers, mobile food vendors, and more. The license must be obtained from the local health department.

2) Food workers must be trained

All food workers must be trained in food safety. This includes waitstaff, cooks, dishwashers, and anyone else who handles food. Food safety training must be completed before beginning work, and it must be updated every three years.

3) Food must be from approved sources

Only approved food sources can be used in restaurants. Approved sources include registered farms, suppliers, state-inspected slaughterhouses, and processors.

4) Food must be stored appropriately

All food must be stored properly to prevent spoilage and contamination. Refrigerated food must be kept at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below, while frozen food must be kept at 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

5) Food must be cooked properly

Cooked food must reach the minimum internal temperature to ensure that any bacteria present is killed. The minimum internal temperatures for various food items are as follows:

Beef, pork, lamb: 145 degrees Fahrenheit

Chicken, turkey: 165 degrees Fahrenheit

Fish: 145 degrees Fahrenheit

6) Food must be adequately cooled

Cooked food must be cooled quickly to prevent bacterial growth. Bacteria can double in number every 20 minutes at room temperature. Cooled food must be stored at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below.

7) Food must be adequately reheated

Reheated food must reach the minimum internal temperature to ensure that any bacteria present is killed.

8) Food must be free of contaminants

All food must be free of contaminants, including bacteria, chemicals, and physical objects. Food can become contaminated anytime in the food chain, from farm to table.

9) Waste must be disposed of properly

All food waste must be appropriately disposed of to prevent contamination. Waste must be stored in closed containers and kept away from food.

10) The premises must be clean

The premises must be kept clean at all times to prevent the spread of contaminants. This includes mopping floors, cleaning surfaces, and washing hands.

Every restaurant owner must know these food safety regulations for restaurants. By following these regulations, you can help to keep your customers safe and prevent foodborne illness.

Please see the information on germ hotspots below to make sure you are following food safety guidelines everywhere in your restaurant.

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