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1 Table of Contents Introduction... 1 Food Handler Certification Program... 1 Personal Hygiene... 2 Temperature Control... 5 Cross-contamination... 6 Cleaning and Sanitizing... 6 Dishwashing... 7 Food Storage... 8 Waste Disposal...14 Rodent and Insect Control...14 Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point System (HACCP)...14 Sample HACCP Flow Chart: Hamburgers...16 Information for Parents: Making Safe Lunches at Home...17

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3 Introduction The following information is a guide for food handling in child care settings. It does not replace or cover all requirements contained in Regulation 562 Food Premises under the Ontario Health Protection and Promotion Act. Food Handler Certification Program The Food Handler Certification Program is designed to teach food handlers the general principles of safe food handling. This course will provide food handlers with the basic knowledge to identify risk factors associated with foodborne illness and the skills necessary to handle food in a manner that will prevent illness from occurring. Certification can be acquired via the following methods: Full 9 hour, in class Food Handler Certification Course taught by a Public Health Inspector. On-line course found at plus exam proctored by a Public Health Inspector. Niagara Region Food Handler Certification Manual, to be available as a PDF on-line plus exam proctored by a Public Health Inspector. Professional knowledge or individual study plus exam proctored by a Public Health Inspector. Course taken at a private institution that is accredited with being an equivalent program by Niagara Region Public Health (NRPH). In July 2010, the Mandatory Food Handler Certification By-law was passed by Regional Council. The By-law makes it mandatory for high and medium risk food premises to have a valid and current Food Handler Certificate for an operator and a food handler at all times while open. High risk premises require compliance by 2013; medium risk premises require compliance by Niagara Region Public Health 1

4 Personal Hygiene Food handlers entering the kitchen to prepare food must have hair confined, put on a clean apron, wash hands and maintain short finger nails. Jewellery should not be worn when preparing food. **Aprons must be removed when leaving the kitchen for duties other than food related activities (to prevent cross-contamination between non-food and food areas). Establish hand washing policies for all staff and ensure proper techniques are followed. Liquid or foam soap is to be used and vigorously lather all parts of the hand for a minimum 15 seconds. Wash and rinse with warm water and dry hands with paper towels. In areas where hand wash sink is not required, alcohol based hand rubs can be effectively used provided that the hands are visibly clean and dry. Follow manufacturers directions regarding the use of these alcohol based hand rubs. Niagara Region Public Health 2

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7 Temperature Control The Danger Zone The danger zone is the temperature range between 4 C/40 F and 60 C/140 F. Cook foods to the proper cooking temperature for at least 15 seconds as indicated on the Cooking Temperature Chart. Keep hot foods hot 60 C/140 F or above. Keep cold foods cold 4 C/40 F or below. Keep frozen food at -18 C/0 F or below. Do not allow hazardous foods to be in the danger zone longer than two hours when preparing food (shorter time periods are recommended). Cool food quickly using shallow pans or ice baths. Stir food frequently to facilitate rapid cooling. When reheating food, quickly reheat to original cooking temperature. Defrost Food Safely Food can be safely defrosted in the refrigerator, or under cold running water, or in a microwave using the defrost cycle. Once food is defrosted, it is recommended that it be used within two days. Probe Thermometer Use a probe thermometer to take the internal cooking temperature of hazardous food. The probe must be inserted into the thickest part of the food. Make sure the probe does not touch bone, fat, gristle or the container. Thin foods such as hamburger patties, insert the probe horizontally. Irregular shaped foods, casseroles, combination dishes should be probed in several places. Clean and disinfect the probe after each use and before inserting it into the next food item. Record the internal temperatures in a log book. Ensure to calibrate the thermometer regularly. Cook Food Thoroughly Make sure all hazardous food is cooked for at least 15 seconds at the minimum internal temperature as indicated on the Cooking Temperature Chart. Niagara Region Public Health 5

8 Cross-contamination Cross-contamination is the transfer of pathogens from a contaminated source to ready to eat food, thus making the food unsafe to eat. Common Causes Raw food or its juices come in contact with cooked food or ready to eat food. When unclean hands contaminate food. Using the same equipment or utensils to handle raw and cooked or ready to eat food. Unprotected coughing and sneezing around ready to eat food. Prevention Make sure to clean and sanitize cutting boards and knives after they come in contact with hazardous food. Store vegetables, cooked or ready to eat food and raw meat separately in the refrigerator. Place raw meats on the bottom shelf. Label chemicals and pesticides and store them in a separate area away from food. WASH YOUR HANDS Cleaning and Sanitizing Counters, trays, food contact surfaces, lunch tables and chairs should be cleaned using the following method: Wash with warm soapy water. Rinse with warm clear water. Wipe the surfaces with one of the following solutions: - A fresh chlorine solution of not less 100 parts per million (ppm) - Quaternary ammonium compound solution (quats) of not less than 200 ppm - Commercial sanitizers used in accordance with manufacturer s directions A minimum contact time of two minutes is required before the surface can be used when sanitizing with chlorine or quats. Contact times for commercial sanitizers may vary and the manufacturer s instructions must be followed. Test strips are available through commercial cleaning supply companies to ensure that your sanitizing solution is the correct strength. Use a product that has a Drug Identification Number (DIN). Niagara Region Public Health 6

9 Dishwashing Wash dishes and utensils according to one of the following methods: Manual Dishwashing Three Compartment Sink Method Wash dishes and utensils in the first sink with warm soapy water. Rinse dishes and utensils in the second sink in clean water at a temperature not lower than 43 C (110 F). Sanitize dishes and utensils in the third sink by immersing in a sanitizing solution. Acceptable sanitizing solutions are: Clean water at a temperature not less than 77 C (170 F) for at least 45 seconds. Clean chlorine solution of not less than 100 parts per million at a minimum temperature of 24 C (75 F) for at least 45 seconds. Clean quaternary ammonium compound solution of not less than 200 parts per million at a minimum temperature of 24 C (75 F) for at least 45 seconds. Clean iodine solution of not less than 25 parts per million at a minimum temperature of 24 C for at least 45 seconds. A test reagent for determining the concentration of sanitizer can be purchased from commercial cleaning supply companies. Mechanical Dishwashing Commercial Dishwasher Wash water must be maintained at a temperature not lower than 60 C (140 F). Sanitizing can be accomplished by: - A rinse cycle that sprays clean water at a temperature not lower than 82 C (180 F) for at least 10 seconds. - A rinse cycle that sprays a sanitizing solution of the same strength as described above in Acceptable sanitizing solutions. The requirement of a commercial dishwasher in smaller child care centres can be reviewed by the Public Health Inspector and the child care operator. Niagara Region Public Health 7

10 Food Storage Refrigerated Storage Refrigerate all hazardous foods such as meat, poultry, fish, cooked rice, and dairy products because they have the ability to support the growth of disease causing organisms. Check the labels of packaged products for refrigeration instructions. Some hazardous foods may have been subjected to drying or canning processes that will allow storage at room temperature until the package is opened. Ensure that each refrigerator and freezer has an accurate indicating thermometer. Ensure that your refrigerator is at a temperature of 4 C (40 F) or lower. Ensure that your freezer is at a temperature of -18 C (0 F) or lower. Store opened products in sealed containers. Arrange food containers in the refrigerator so that air circulates freely. Don t overcrowd the refrigerator. Store raw meats, poultry in sealed containers, below ready to eat foods. Thaw frozen food in the refrigerator, under cold running water, or in a microwave on the defrost cycle, NOT at room temperature. Clean and disinfect all interior surfaces, racks, trays of the refrigerator as often as necessary. Food Sampling Samples of each hazardous food should be taken from every meal and kept for five days in the refrigerator or freezer. Save samples so that there is always a five day supply on hand, one day in one day out. During an enteric outbreak, the food samples are to be kept for the duration of the outbreak, until the outbreak is declared over. The size of the food samples to be kept are: - Solid Food minimum 100grams (3.5oz) - Liquid Food minimum 100 ml (3.5oz) Non-refrigerated Storage Keep non-refrigerated food storage areas clean, dry well ventilated, and adequately lighted. Ensure foods in storage are rotated (first in first out). Store foods on shelves at least 15 centimetres (6 inches) above the floor. Use non-absorbent, easy to clean shelving. Clean storage rooms and cupboards once a month or as often as required. Store opened dry goods in sealable containers. Ensure all food containers are labelled. Keep non-food items, especially cleaning products, insecticides, mops, and brooms in a separate area away from the food storage area. Ensure that this area is inaccessible to children. Niagara Region Public Health 8

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16 Waste Disposal Have enough garbage containers to store all garbage that is generated between collection days. Choose durable plastic or metal garbage containers with tight fitting lids. Keep the garbage containers covered and away from food storage and food preparation areas. Thoroughly clean and sanitize all garbage containers as often as required. Do not leave garbage in kitchen overnight. Rodent and Insect Control Screen all doors and windows in your child care centre, and maintain in good repair. Rotate food stocks regularly to prevent insect infestation. Inspect all foods when they arrive at your centre. Do not accept any products if you see insects. Clean all food spills immediately. Store food products in insect and rodent proof containers. If an infestation occurs, hire a licensed pest control operator to eliminate the problem. Arrange for the pest control service at a time when children are not present. Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point System (HACCP) Most food poisonings are caused by temperature abuse during the storage and handling of hazardous foods. All food prepared should follow the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point System (HACCP). HACCP is a system which: Looks at hazardous and high risk foods. Identifies the greatest risk factors of the food known to cause food borne illness. Makes the changes necessary to reduce or eliminate the risk. Monitors overall food handling. Hazard Analysis: Is the process of examining the flow of food to identify the points that may cause food borne illness. Critical Control Point (CCP): Is a step in the preparation of a food where any unsafe situation that may lead to a food borne illness is eliminated, prevented or controlled. Niagara Region Public Health 14

17 Six Steps to a HACCP System 1. Review recipes and assess their risk Review recipes, listing each step and its level of hazard, paying special attention to food with high risk ingredients. Breakdown recipes into delivery, storage, preparation, cooking, portioning, serving, and use of leftovers. Use a flow chart diagram to show each step, the equipment used, the personnel involved, the location of the process and other processes in the same area. 2. Identify critical control points (CCP) On a flow chart, record the expected time, temperature and amount of handling involved in each step according to the recipe. A sample flow chart is provided in this chapter. Break down each step and look for the possibility of contamination and growth of micro-organisms. 3. Make a plan to use preventive and control measures Minimize contamination of food by killing pathogenic micro-organisms, destroying toxins or stopping pathogenic micro-organism growth. Plan how the recipe can be changed in case monitoring reveals problems. 4. Monitor CCP s Watch food preparation and measure the actual time, temperature and amount of handling at all the steps. Record this information on the flow chart. All steps must be monitored to make sure the planned control and preventive measures work. 5. Take immediate action to correct any problems Action must be taken when time and temperature measurements show that there are unsafe food practices. 6. Keep a log of recipes This log will contain the recipe, its flow chart, time, temperature and amount of handling at each step. Review the procedures often and record the proper preparation steps and handling concerns. Niagara Region Public Health 15

18 Sample HACCP Flow Chart: Hamburgers Receive Raw Meat (4C/40F) Gather ingredients and utensils, preheat oven to 177C/350F, in order to prevent crosscontamination Mix raw meat and ingredients, portion within a 2 hour time period Cook to internal temperature of 71C/160F Maintain a hot holding temperature of 60C/140F until serving Following options are available Serve immediately to patrons Cool quickly in shallow containers to an internal temperature of 4C/40F Niagara Region Public Health 16

19 Information for Parents Making Safe Lunches at Home Packing lunches for school takes time and energy, but following these tips could prevent a foodborne illness in your family. 1. Clean Wash your hands for 20 seconds with soap and warm running water before preparing any meal. Make sure you sanitize countertops, utensils and any lunch boxes or lunch bags. Mix 2.5 ml (1/2 tsp) of bleach with 1 L (4 cups) of water. Apply to surface and let stand briefly. Rinse with plenty of clean water and air dry or use a clean towel. Raw fruits or vegetables can be contaminated with bacteria. Wash them with clean water and a scrub brush before eating. 2. Keep Cold Food Cold Foods like meat, chicken, seafood, eggs, and dairy products must stay cold to stay safe. Use frozen freezer packs to keep food at or below 4 C (40 F). Use an insulated lunch box/bag and keep it away from any heat sources. Place freezer packs between foods that need to stay cold. Refrigerate all items the night before to get your lunch box/bag off to a cool start. 3. Keep Hot Food Hot Hot food must stay hot at above 60 C (140 F). Use insulated containers and keep them closed until ready to eat or take your food cold and reheat it. For those times when you do not feel like cooking or you forget to make a lunch and decide to go out to a restaurant, remember to go online and visit niagarainfodine. This website posts the results of inspections performed in all food establishments operating in the Niagara region. To view the website visit Niagara Region Public Health 17

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