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Food Hygiene Consultant Kent

Food Hygiene Consultant Kent

Whether you are starting a new food business or have been running one for many years; it is always essential to refresh yourself with the latest food hygiene knowledge. One of the best ways to make sure your business in Kent is following best practice approaches to food safety is by employing a food hygiene consultant Kent. At CaterSafe, we offer food hygiene consultant Kent for training, strategies and audits.

One of the ways a food hygiene consultant can help you is by developing a food hygiene plan. Here are some of the tops tips from a food hygiene consultant Kent on how to prepare your business for food safety.

Top Tips From A Food Hygiene Consultant Kent

  1. Get to know your hazards

Every food business will have their unique hazards. It is essential to get to know all of the hazards in your organisation and how to control them. For this, training in HACCP is critical, so you know what to look out for. Secondly, it is useful to have a fresh pair of eyes to overlook your production line and processes just in case there is a hazard you have missed.

  1. Don’t stress

Food safety is important, but it shouldn’t be something to fear. Outshine your competitors by putting a focus on food hygiene and make it fun for your team. After all, audits and inspections are to help your business. These checks can help to improve your standards which strengthen your organisation.

  1. It’s a team effort

Food safety isn’t just a responsibility for you or your food hygiene consultant Kent. It should be a role for your whole team. Ensure everyone receives food hygiene training and make sure it becomes a key component of everything you do, not just a burden when it is time for an inspection.

Looking for a food hygiene consultant Kent?

If you are looking for support for your food business, CaterSafe Consultants can help. Our team can provide training, inspections and food hygiene plans to help your business succeed. Find out more with a free consultation. Call or email the team to arrange your appointment.

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HACCP Consulting Kent

HACCP Consulting Kent

With HACCP being a critical part of your food safety plan, it is essential to ensure you have the right help at hand. When it comes to HACCP, it can be an excellent idea to employ third-party HACCP consulting Kent. So how can you find the right HACCP consultancy that your food business needs?

Step One: Create A Plan For Your Business

When it comes to your knowledge, time and business style, they will each play a part on what type of HACCP consultant you need. For HACCP Consulting Kent, experts can be as involved as you want them to. They can offer a range of services such as;

  • Devising and documenting a HACCP plan
  • Verify an existing plan
  • Provide training and management of a food safety system
  • Assess your plan
  • Devise an implementation strategy.

Before reaching out to HACCP consultants, it is worthwhile considering what you are looking for. For example, do you want infrequent assistance or a fully managed service?

Step Two: Choosing HACCP Consulting Kent

Once you know what you want, you can then start the search for the right consultancy for you. For businesses in Kent, it is wise to choose HACCP consulting Kent, so they have easy access to your premises. If you select a consultant that is based further afield, then you may incur additional travel fees.

Secondly, you’ll want a consultant that you can gel with. It should be easy to converse with them, and both sides should be able to listen to each other. Ask about the type of support they offer and how they can help your business. Reputable HACCP consultants should be able to show you case studies and previous work they have done.

Finally, do make sure to check their qualifications.

Step Three: Get HACCP Sorted

Once you have found the perfect HACCP consulting Kent business for you, you can start to improve your food safety and stay compliant.

If you are looking for HACCP consultants in Kent, get in touch with CaterSafe Consultants who can help your business with all accepts of HACCP and food safety.

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HACCP training courses in UK

Find out about HACCP training courses

Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) is a popular, methodical and effective way to manage food safety. In 2006, a new regulation was passed that all food and beverage businesses must have a food safety management system in place. Furthermore, the system must base itself on HACCP principles. As well as this, food businesses must keep up to date records of its operations.

CaterSafe Consultants can help to bring your business up to speed with HACCP through a range of HACCP training courses delivered in-house or externally. We also offer a comprehensive Introduction To HACCP Level Two online e-learning course. This course is ideal for food businesses as it allows delegates to complete the course at a convenient time without lowering productivity or impacting production.

 

What is HACCP?

HACCP was originally a food safety system developed by NASA. NASA pioneered

HACCP training courses

 the system for increased food safety during the space race. Since then, it has evolved, and many businesses in the food and beverage industry utilise its principles. In 2006, The Food Hygiene (England) Regulations 2006, as well as the equivalent regulations in the rest of the UK, simplified the legislation to align with HACCP principles.

HACCP principles have certainly made it easier for businesses to implement a food safety management system. However, it is vital that companies within the food industry can prove due diligence and conformance to HACCP. Complying with a HACCP strategy can lower the risk of a serious incident and can help you legally if something goes wrong.

During visits and inspections, the Environmental Health Officer is likely to ask to see your HACCP plan incorporated in your food safety management system. If you fail to comply, then you may face a fine. As well as this, you may face the prospect of closure either temporarily or permanently. With this in mind, HACCP and HACCP training courses are critical to your business success and profitability.

 

How can HACCP Training courses help?

HACCP is essential to your food safety management system. As a result, it is vital that your team has full knowledge of HACCP and how to implement it successfully in your organisation. HACCP training courses will begin by introducing the key terminology and aspects of HACCP.

With foundations in place, training can then focus on how to identify hazards. This then leads to understanding the appropriate critical control points you need in place. Hazard analysis and critical control identification can then ensure full compliance and a high standard of food safety.

CaterSafe Consultants recommend the Introduction To HACCP Level Two course to all teams who interact with food during their work. This comprehensive e-learning course allows people to learn at their own pace and at a convenient time. Furthermore, it makes it easy to train new employees as soon as they begin work. This takes away the stress and difficulty of organising regular training sessions.

Want to find out more about HACCP Training?

For more details, please call 01233 822 201 or contact a member of our consultancy team for more information.

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10 Key Steps To Starting A Food Business

Food Safety Hygiene Certificates

10 Key Steps To Starting A Food Business

 

Food is an essential and enjoyable part of everyday life. Starting a food business, or becoming a ‘foodpreneur’ can be incredibly rewarding. However, it also takes a lot of hard work, time, dedication and commitment, as well as having several winning recipes or products up your sleeve. If you’re ready for the challenge, here is the CaterSafe Consultants 10 step guide for how to start a food business.

 

10 Key Steps:

 

  1. Be unique

There are many different food businesses out there. In order to stand out from the crowd, you need to come up with a brand-new concept or a concept which already works, but with your own USP (unique Selling Point).  Conducting market research is essential to find out what is already out there, what is successful and how you can make your concept compete and stand out in a highly competitive industry. That said, remember not to be too ‘out there’.

 

  1. Get practicing

If you want paying customers to buy your products over and over again, then  your products need to be of a consistently high standard. Perfect your recipes as much as possible. Conduct taste tests with family, friends and local markets and welcome both positive and negative feedback, in order to help you improve your product.

 

  1. Create your business plan

Ensure investors and stakeholders take your proposal seriously and make sure your idea is viable with a solid business plan. Follow expert tips to ensure your business plan is professional and detailed.

 

  1. Contact authorities

Contact your local Trading Standards Officer for labeling and legal advice. You will also need to contact your local council and their environmental health department. Their advice can help to make sure you have a safe and effective kitchen to comply with hygiene requirements.

 

  1. Register your business

You must register your business at least 28 days before trading. Registration is free with your local authority. Depending on your food business, you may need approval. Once you are registered, an officer may inspect your business. As well as registering with your local council, you also need to register your business or sole trader account with Companies House.

 

  1. Get food hygiene savvy

Food safety is crucial to your new business as well as being a legal requirement. Food safety training can help you and your team to get up to date with the latest food laws and regulations to ensure you remain compliant.

 

  1. Gather capital

From loans to crowdfunding, to start a food business, you will need an initial investment to buy supplies, stock and potentially premises. You’ll need starting capital to cover staff costs, insurance and ensure your business is ready to go. That said however, many food businesses fail early on because they are under capitalised, over-spend on non-essentials or get into too much debt.

 

  1. Start marketing

Make sure your customers know where to find you with marketing. This could include advertising on social media, building a website and sending flyers out. Marketing can be expensive, so it is essential to set aside a budget for this purpose.

 

  1. Shine with customer service

To keep your customers returning again and again, your business needs to stand out from your competitors. Many food businesses claim to offer exceptional customer service, – but in reality, very few do!

Get the basics right, and everything else will follow. A great product at a sensible price with exceptional customer service is the recipe for success in any food business.

 

  1. Stay positive

As long as you enjoy running your food business, the enthusiasm will show. To build a successful business takes time! Concentrate on the fundamentals; your product, price and service. Remember that it takes time to build up momentum and for the word to get out, so be patient and don’t give up. Stay positive and persevere.

 

Questions about 10 Key Steps To Start A Food Business

If you have any questions or would like to know more about the 10 Key Steps To Start A Food Business – contact CaterSafe Consultants on 01233 822 201 or go to our contact page.

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Food Hygiene Rating Scheme

Mystery Diner

About the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme

Find out about the UK’s Food Hygiene Rating Scheme that was filmed at Bluewater in Kent.

The scheme aims to help consumers choose where to eat out or shop for food by giving them information about the hygiene standards in restaurants, cafés, takeaways, hotels and food shops.

Ratings are given to places where members of the public can eat out, such as restaurants, takeaways, cafés, sandwich shops, pubs, and hotels. Ratings are also given to other places the public eat at, when away from home, such as schools, hospitals and residential care homes.

Places where the public shop for food, such as supermarkets, bakeries, and delicatessens are also given a rating. The overarching aim of the scheme is to encourage businesses to improve hygiene standards, thus reducing the incidence of food-borne illness.

 

How CaterSafe Consultants Can Help

CaterSafe can provide a professional analysis of your business’ food storage, preparation and production areas, food safety procedures and documentation. This is followed up with a written report containing implementation recommendations, to prove you have shown ‘due diligence’ when inspected by your local Environmental Health Practitioner.

An audit from us will help your business to achieve, or work towards, the ‘very good’ hygiene standard rating operated by the National Food Hygiene Rating Scheme.The hygiene rating scheme, enables your customers to see how closely your business is meeting the requirements of food hygiene law.

CaterSafe consultants provide a professional analysis of your business’ food storage, preparation and production areas, food hygiene procedures and management systems and your documentation.

This is followed up with a written report containing implementation recommendations, to prove you have shown ‘due diligence’ when inspected by your local Environmental Health Practitioner / Officer.

An independent external audit will help boost your ‘confidence in management’ rating on The National Food Hygiene Rating scheme (NFHRS), enabling your business to achieve the maximum NFHRS rating.

Contact CaterSafe Consultants

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme – Contact CaterSafe Consultants today on 01233 822 201

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Food Safety Kent

Food Safety Kent

For anyone starting a new food business, there is a lot to consider. From financing to finding the perfect location, choosing the ideal menu, providers and creating your brand. With so much to get underway, it is essential to keep in mind the basic requirements of the business: food safety. At CaterSafe Consultants, we can support your new venture. We can help you with all aspects of food safety Kent, such as food safety training and consultancy.

CaterSafe Consultants cover all aspects of food safety Kent and in the surrounding areas too. Whatever support your new food business needs, we are here to help you with our bespoke and buy online courses.

Food Safety Kent – What your business needs to consider

  1. Registration

To set up a new food business, you need to register your food premises with the local council. Different councils may vary their terms, but typically you will need to register your premises at least 28 days before you intend to open.

  1. Get to grips with the law

It is essential that you and your team learn the basic hygiene requirements and the regulations that relate to your business. The Food Hygiene Regulations is where you need to start your reading so that you can adopt food safety Kent. Training courses are an excellent way to understand the requirements of the law. Food safety Kent training can also provide you with practical steps to implement good food hygiene practices in your business.

  1. HACCP

Food safety management is essential for new business. One of the best ways to evidence your commitment to managing food safety is through HACCP. HACCP stands for hazard analysis and critical control point. CaterSafe Consultants offer a range HACCP courses to cover a range of different food safety businesses

How CaterSafe Consultants can help

CaterSafe Consultants offer food safety training and consultancy in Kent and beyond. If you are starting a new food venture, speak to our team for free, friendly advice for the best training to suit your needs. Get in touch for your free consultation.

 

 

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Food Hygiene Courses In Kent

Food Hygiene Courses In Kent

With food hygiene being a critical aspect of any food handling business, training is vital to comply with legislation. At CaterSafe Consultants, we offer food hygiene courses in Kent, so that food handling teams operate safely and hygienically. To suit all businesses, we provide a range of different food hygiene courses at a variety of levels.

Who can benefit from food hygiene courses in Kent?

Maintaining food hygiene is vital to comply with legislation in the UK. In fact, anyone that handles food must have appropriate training for food hygiene. With this in mind, all food business operators need to make sure they ensure training for their employees either from previous experience or offering training.

Training is not only useful for frontline staff, but is also vital for supervisors, and senior staff such as management, head chefs and trainers. All of which are responsible for sharing their knowledge and make sure food hygiene principles from training as always applied.

Why should your business undertake food hygiene courses in Kent?

While the appropriate training is essential to comply with legislation, there are many benefits to providing your workforce with food hygiene training.

  1. Career advancement

Identifying key workers in your team to undertake higher levels of food hygiene courses will help you to promote supervisors within your team. It will also provide your organisation with further skills and knowledge that could improve production in your organisation. Furthermore, offering regular training to your team will help with your staff retention levels too.

  1. Appreciation

For many staff, cleaning and due diligence are the most arduous parts of the job, which means they are not always kept to high standards. Training your team about the principles of food hygiene and why it is so important brings a level of appreciation. Knowing their jobs could be at stake and that they are directly responsible can make sure that staff undertake their duties conscientiously and with pride.

  1. Efficiency

After training, food-handling principles become second nature, making processes much more efficient which can help with productivity. By following stringent measures learnt in training, the staff influence each other. Ultimately, this can help to bring a complete behavioural change to the organisation, in a positive way.

CaterSafe Consultants for food hygiene courses in Kent

CaterSafe Consultants offer a range of food hygiene courses tailored to suit different industries and business needs. For food hygiene training for your business, get in touch with our team for free, friendly advice.

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HACCP Training in Kent

HACCP Training in Kent

Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point, also known as HACCP, is an essential aspect of any successful food business. HACCP is a system that you can implement in your food handling business that helps to control aspects of food safety to minimise the risk. However, to deploy HACCP in your organisation effectively, training is essential. This is why CaterSafe Consultants offer HACCP Training in Kent.

Why choose HACCP Training in Kent?

HACCP can be used in any food business. It is designed to help you to score highly on food hygiene audits as well as controlling potential hazards in your food production. As well as being one of the most rigorous food safety mechanisms, HACCP is also cost-effective.

HACCP works as a preventative mechanism, helping to ensure quality throughout your business. It can help you reduce the risk of food hygiene issues and control hazards before they become severe problems.

There are many benefits of adopting HACCP including;

  • Increasing levels of food safety standards
  • Improving food quality
  • Organises your production more effectively
  • Promotes teamwork
  • Provides defence and evidence of due diligence
  • Can save your business money
  • Ensures compliance with food hygiene legislation
  • Keeps your customers safe.

CaterSafe Consultants HACCP Training in Kent

At CaterSafe Consultants we focus our HACCP training for food manufacturing. We offer a Level 2, 3 and 4 Award for HACCP For Manufacturing. We can provide training at your place of work for convenience. With the training, individuals will learn all of the principles of HACCP and be able to manage food safety.

Level Two – This course takes one day and covers all of the duties of HACCP to make an efficient and effective operation of your food manufacturing business.

Level Three – This course will provide a regulated qualification that complies with the industry standard. With five days of training, the participants can work towards achieving a qualification that is recognised by environmental health practitioners.

Level Four – The ideal course for management of food manufacturing business. This course allows the learner to think critically about HACCP in their organisation for continuous improvement. This course also takes five days.

Why HACCP course is right for you?

If you are not sure which HACCP course is right for you and your organisation, get in touch with CaterSafe Consultants for your free consultation. Call the training team now on 01233 822 201.

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Food Safety Consultant

Food Safety Hygiene Certificates

Looking for a Food Safety Consultant?

CaterSafe is based in Ashford, Kent and was conceived by Samuel Turner, who began his career as an apprentice chef. After working for many years in the catering and hospitality industry, he went on to become a catering college lecturer, Food Safety trainer and HACCP food safety certification specialist. Sam now heads up CaterSafe as Principal Consultant.

CaterSafe Consultants are a well respected Food Safety consultancy and leading provider of Food Safety, HACCP and other compliance based training. CaterSafe work predominately in Kent, Sussex, Surrey and the London area but are willing to travel further afield, and have clients throughout the UK and parts of Europe.

Food Safety training and HACCP systems.

CaterSafe specialise in delivering Food Safety training and HACCP systems for a variety of businesses in a variety of sectors which include: hotels, hospitals, restaurants, supermarkets, schools, butchers, abattoirs, food distributers and a variety of food manufacturers.

In our experience, many, if not most, food safety consultants have a solely scientific, rather than a food management background. Consequently they cannot genuinely empathise with the day-to-day pressures associated with running a demanding business, whilst practically implementing food safety legislation.

CaterSafe is different, having been built on the firm foundation of experience within the food industry and sound science. Each of our fully qualified consultants has many years of experience managing busy food operations, whilst maintaining high standards of food safety control, so we understand the obstacles you face! At CaterSafe we work in partnership with you, taking the time to understand the unique features of your business, in order to develop a food safety management system that can be practically and consistently implemented on a day to day basis.

Contact Catersafe Consultants

Based in Ashford, Kent, we can provide training courses to business in Kent and across the UK. We offer courses in your business as well as handy e-learning online training, for your staff to take at their leisure. Get in touch to discuss your training requirements with our team and find the perfect course by calling 01233 822 201.

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Food Safety Courses in Kent

Food safety courses in Kent

When it comes to any organisation in the food industry in the UK, there are essential requirements to follow. Food safety is of the utmost importance. By following food safety standards, you comply with legislation, showcase your business as trustworthy and run a safe organisation. A critical aspect of food safety is in training. At CaterSafe Consultants, we provide food safety courses in Kent.

Why choose food safety courses in Kent?

CaterSafe Consultants run a variety of food safety courses in Kent to support local food businesses. We provide food safety courses in Kent for those involved in the manufacturing, handling and logistics of food. By helping a wealth of different food businesses, we can tailor our training to suit your requirements. We make sure all of our training material is specific to various food businesses so that it is as engaging and thought-provoking as possible.

By law, there are specific training requirements for food businesses. For example, any staff members that handle food must have instruction, training and supervision in relation to food hygiene. Furthermore, these members of staff need to have the relevant training for the job and tasks they will undertake.

While the law does not require a specific training course, many businesses want a course that is certified by professional bodies. At CaterSafe Consultants, our food safety courses in Kent are run by professional trainers and are accredited. We can deliver the training on-site or off-site for your needs. Furthermore, our courses are high-quality with a focus on regulatory compliance.

CaterSafe food safety courses in Kent

From induction training for new recruits or new food businesses to formal level three and four training. We have a range of food safety courses to suit your business needs. To reduce the disruption to your business, our trainers can come to our premises. Furthermore, we can conduct training around your service times for complete convenience. To book your training call 01233 822 201 and speak to our training team.

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HACCP Courses

HACCP Courses

One of the fundamental ways that businesses within the food industry manage food safety and hygiene is through HACCP. HACCP stands for Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point. It is a system that follows certain principles in managing food safety hazards. In order to use HACCP effectively, training is often required through HACCP courses. At Catersafe Consultants we provide online training and HACCP course to help you manage food safety.

What is HACCP?

With all the processes in place to run your food business, it is essential to take a detailed look at each step to identify if there are any risks for food hygiene and food safety. Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point allow you to examine all the steps in each process closely. You can then identify any potential aspects which could go wrong and impact food safety.

Once you have an overview of processes, you can begin to identify critical control points. These are the exact points which your organisation needs to prioritise for the sake of food safety. Within these critical control points, you can then work towards removing and limiting any risks to help make your processes as safe as possible.

By following HACCP, you should be recording your plan and findings to see whether your procedures are working. HACCP records provide invaluable evidence for audits and inspections. Your documents can show that your business prioritises food safety.

HACCP Courses

At Catersafe Consultants our introduction the HACCP Level Two course is online training you can do anywhere. The 80-minute course will go through the vital terminology that you need to know. It will then help you to identify and analyse hazards. Furthermore, it will help you to understand where your critical control points lie.

Improve food safety with HACCP courses

Keep your business compliant and as safe as possible with our HACCP training. Sign up for the course here or call the team on 01233 822 201 if you have any questions.

 

 

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Food Allergy Awareness Week 13th-19th May 2018

Food allergy awareness week

Did you know that someone in the world is admitted to hospital every three seconds because of a food allergy reaction?  Furthermore, 20% of the UK population suffer effects by at least one allergy. Alarmingly, 44% of British adults suffer from an allergy and is continuing to rise.  Food Allergy Awareness Week begins on the 13th May 2018 to highlight the dangers of food allergies.

Food Allergy Awareness Week is here to help raise awareness of the difficulties that food allergy sufferers face and helps to educate individuals on what to do should an allergic reaction take place. Of course, the primary goal of Food Allergy Awareness week is to highlight the issue and reduce the number of problems and accidents from food allergies. For more people to have an awareness, it increases the amount of support allergy sufferers have. It also helps to prevent food allergy accidents from occurring.

Why Food Allergy Awareness Week is important to the food industry

When food products are contaminated or incorrectly label their ingredients, it can be fatal for food allergy sufferers. For the business, there are 14 allergens which legislation controls. By law, food industries need to highlight and include any allergens on the list of ingredients. Food companies must clearly indicate the allergens. Many companies will choose to highlight allergens in bold for the ease of the customers.

If allergens do not have a label, then liability can arise. Companies may suffer as a law of negligence or under the Consumer Protection Act 1987.

Food allergy awareness training with Catersafe Consultants

Catersafe Consultants offer an insightful food allergen awareness online training. The course covers the 14 allergens that legislation controls. The training also explains the symptoms of food allergies and what can trigger them. This is an ideal course for those in the catering industry. Furthermore, Food Allergy Awareness Week is a perfect time to make sure your team stay compliant and increase their awareness. Sign up for the course here or discuss your training requirements by calling 01233 822 201.

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Food Hygiene Courses Kent

Food Safety Courses

If your business is in the food sector, then your employees will need food safety training. If you make, handle, prepare or sell food, then your staff need training. Without sufficient training, supervision or instruction, you may face a scathing review from your local Environmental Health Officer. At CaterSafe, we know how important it is for businesses to have excellent health, hygiene and safety standards. With this in mind, CaterSafe provides a range of food hygiene courses Kent.

The benefits of food hygiene courses Kent

At CaterSafe, we offer training for food businesses in Kent as well as across the UK. We provide both onsite and offsite training as well as e-learning courses for complete food safety coverage for all team members and food situations. There are many benefits to having sufficient food hygiene training which includes;

Compliance

Training can help staff to understand the necessary legislation which can help to improve your compliance. This can help to increase your rating by inspections too.

Image boosting

Customers will look out for good and bad food hygiene practices. If customers are not happy that your business operates safely and cleanly, then it can damage your reputation. Regular training and refresher training can help to reiterate the importance of good food hygiene practice and make sure customers are happy that you prioritise their safety.

Reduce food wastage

Following the right food hygiene principles can help staff to be more aware of food storage and handling. Our training courses will also highlight pest control. All of which can help your business to minimise wastage which can save your business money.

Improve profits with food hygiene courses Kent

CaterSafe offers a range of food hygiene courses Kent and across the UK. Our courses can help to improve efficiency, provide practical tips and assure best practice approaches. All of which can reduce operational costs, improve your reputation and increase profits. Book your food hygiene course with our expert trainers by calling 01233 822 201.

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Food Safety Training Ashford, Kent

Food Safety Training Ashford, Kent

For any worker that handles food, Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004 applies. This is a legal requirement to make sure that food handlers have training or supervision when relating to food hygiene matters. To lower the risk of potential food hygiene hazards occurring, training is essential. At CaterSafe, we offer food safety training Ashford, Kent as well as across the county.

What food safety training does my business need?

The Food Regulations 2006 recommend training for food businesses. However, there is no requirement for specific training or a particular course. This means that your business can tailor the courses that you need to suit all members of your team.

Firstly, your food preparation team are likely to require in-depth knowledge to make sure that food is safe for consumption. A course that covers personal and premises hygiene is vital. Further understanding of pest control, food contamination and allergens are also helpful. These can help to reduce the risk of foodborne illness and allergic reactions.

For those who work in the front of house sector, who sell food but do not prepare any, we offer a food safety for retail. This course includes the practical measures that staff can implement in their daily work. All of which can help to minimise the severity of potential hazards. This course covers aspects such as waste management and how to safely hand food.

Food manufacturers also need adequate food safety training. CaterSafe offers a Level One Award in Food Safety for Manufacturing. This food safety training Ashford, Kent is delivered onsite or offsite to suit your needs. The course is suitable for those in low and high-risk food production.

Book your food safety training Ashford, Kent

Based in Ashford, Kent, we can provide training courses to business in Kent and across the UK. We offer courses in your business as well as handy e-learning online training, for your staff to take at their leisure. Get in touch to discuss your training requirements with our team and find the perfect course by calling 01233 822201.

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Reducing the Risk of Acrylamide – What it Means for your Food Business

Not only has April 2018 brought us the implementation of the sugar tax, but it also brings us new legislation on managing acrylamide and, if you’re a food business operator (FBO), it’s something that you need to know about.

Acrylamide is a chemical which forms naturally in starchy foods when cooked at high temperatures (anything over 120˚C).  The sugars in the food items react with naturally occurring amino acids to form acrylamide.  This reaction takes place in potatoes in various forms, e.g roast, chips, crisps etc., bread, some cereal products and also coffee roasting.

Studies carried out in rodents found that exposure to the chemical increased the risk of developing different types of cancer quite significantly.  Although humans and animals react differently to certain chemicals, it is nevertheless the view of scientists that acrylamide could be a potential carcinogen.

It is therefore considered a food safety hazard and the EU has produced new guidelines which set out mitigation measures and benchmark levels to which FBOs are expected to adhere.  While it is impossible to eliminate acrylamide completely, it is possible to reduce levels of it in affected foods by following the mitigation measures provided, thereby reducing potential carcinogen risk to consumers.  Measures should be followed as far as is practicably possible without compromising current hygiene laws.

The legislation lists the following food items to which mitigation measures and benchmark levels should be applied:

  1. French fries, other cut (deep fried) products and sliced potato crisps from fresh potatoes
  2. potato crisps, snacks, crackers and other potato products from potato dough
  3. bread
  4. breakfast cereals (excluding porridge)
  5. fine bakery wares: cookies, biscuits, rusks, cereal bars, scones, cornets, wafers, crumpets and gingerbread, as well as crackers, crisp breads and bread substitutes
  6. coffee
  7. coffee substitutes
  8. baby food and, processed cereal-based food intended for infants and young children

 

Mitigation measures and benchmark levels

The legislation recommends using potatoes which have a naturally lower sugar content.  This will reduce the amount of acrylamide that is produced during the cooking process.  It also stipulates that potatoes should be stored above 6˚C; sugars multiply in potatoes stored in fridges/cold places, thus increasing the level of acrylamide in the end product. Before frying potatoes, they should be rinsed and left to soak in cold water for up to 2 hours and then rinsed again.  Blanching potatoes is also very effective in reducing acrylamide and it is recommended wherever possible and practicable.

Frying temperatures should be kept below 175˚C and lower if possible.  Suppliers should be consulted as to the most suitable oil to use.  Food debris such as crumbs should be skimmed off the fats and oils regularly to keep it free from potential contaminants. Last year, there was a campaign by the FSA to ‘go for gold’, referring to the optimum colour to which your bread should be toasted and your potatoes roasted or fried.  The legislation suggests using appropriate colour charts where available, although the benchmark is to aim for a light, golden colour.

With bread and cereal products, it is recommended that any yeast fermentation time is extended as far as is practicable, that the moisture content of dough be reduced as much as possible and, where viable, lower the oven temperature and extend the cooking time.

With coffee roasting and baby food, it is important to choose ingredients with the lowest potential for acrylamide and identify optimum cooking/roasting temperatures to ensure minimal acrylamide formation. If you are using pre-packed or frozen goods to cook and serve to consumers, cooking guidelines should be followed closely.

Compliance

As with any other legislation, it is important to demonstrate compliance. The chemical hazard of acrylamide and control measures thereof, should be identified and documented within the food businesses Food Safety Management System. Food manufacturers particularly will be expected to have robust procedures in place for sampling and analysis of products indicating that they are seeking to reduce levels of acrylamide in what is being provided to the end customers/consumers.  They will also be expected to keep detailed records of the results.  Once systems are in place, this should be relatively straightforward to maintain.

For more information

We can help.  Contact us if you would like further information or training for you or your staff.  You can find the legislation in full here and some helpful guidelines here.

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Food Safety Courses Kent

food safety courses Kent

If your organisation is in the food industry, then there are many requirements you have to follow. Food hygiene is critical, and all food businesses have a responsibility to make sure that food is safe for consumption. Your Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point plan (HACCP) will highlight your responsibilities for food safety. One area in the HACCP plan may be adequate training. At CaterSafe, we offer a range of food safety courses Kent to keep your food business safe and compliant.

Our food safety courses Kent

One of the easiest ways for employee learning is through e-learning. E-learning can be accessed anywhere at any time for complete convenience. CaterSafe offer a variety of detailed e-learning courses such as;

Level 1 Food Safety – This is the ideal induction course for new employees entering your food business. It covers the basic principles of hygiene, risks and hazards in a food setting. For those with no prior knowledge, this course is essential.

Food Allergen Awareness – In the UK, legislation controls 14 major allergens. This course is essential for a greater understanding of food ingredients, allergies and intolerances. As well as the detailed theory, the course also covers practical steps that your business can adopt today.

Level 2 Food Safety in Retail –  Food safety is not just essential in manufacturing and catering environments. There are many potential food hazards where food is sold, whether in shops, restaurants, hospitals or school. Consequently, this detailed course ensures thorough knowledge of the potential dangers in a retail setting.

Discover food safety courses Kent

As well as offering e-learning courses, CaterSafe also provides on and off-site courses with professional trainers. We can, therefore, tailor courses to fit your precise food safety needs. Our courses cover food safety in a variety of settings including, catering, logistics and retail. To find out which course is best for your needs, contact the CaterSafe training team on 01233 822 201.

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Food Safety Training Kent

Food Safety Training Kent

Food Safety Training Kent

In the last year, the UK alone had 2,265 food safety issues which warranted an inspection by the Food Standards Agency. Of the pathogenic threats, 45% of these relate to Salmonella. Furthermore, the number of allergen incidents was 187 in one year alone. To keep customers safe and your business compliant with the Food Standards Agency, food safety is, therefore, vital. At CaterSafe Consultants, we offer leading food safety training Kent.

Why is food safety training Kent important for your business?

When those working in the food industry do not comply with fundamental food safety measures, it can increase the risk of contamination and foodborne illnesses that can affect your business and customers.

Slipping standards in food safety can be devastating to businesses. Should a foodborne illness occur, this will, first of all, be harmful to the customer. However, this harm will damage the business reputation too. Depending on the severity, neglecting food safety can result in external inspections and consequently potential investigations. Furthermore, it can even result in criminal negligence.

Poor food safety can;

  • Mean a loss of revenue
  • Reduce business profits
  • Receive negative press
  • Damage your reputation
  • Result in bankruptcy or business closure
  • Lead to legal action.

With this in mind, food safety training has never been so necessary. At CaterSafe Consultants, we can help to make sure your foodservice professionals have the knowledge and skills to handle food safely. As a result, this can help to reduce the risk of contamination and food-related illnesses. Our food safety training Kent is a vital course to cover the risks to protect your business.

Contact CaterSafe Consultants for more information on Food Safety Training in Kent

Professional trainers deliver CaterSafe training. We are experts in the necessary compliance and offer training that complies with the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health and Highfield Awarding Body for Compliance.

If you would like to organise bespoke food safety training, we can tailor courses to suit your business needs. Discuss your requirements and book your training today by calling 01233 822 201.

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Food Safety At Christmas

Christmas Turkey

Food Safety At Christmas

Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat!  Actually, these days, it’s the turkey that’s getting fat and plumped up, ready for our tables on Christmas Day along with all the other trimmings that make our festive feasts such a sumptuous affair.  As with such feasts, there are often left overs which hang around for the rest of the day, waiting to be thrown between two slices of bread for a tasty sandwich later on or perhaps saved for bubble and squeak the following day.

Whatever our eating habits over the festive season, there are always a few things we should be mindful of when preparing, cooking and eating, as the most unwanted guest in your house this year will be food poisoning.

It’s likely that in pride of place on your table will be the turkey, fresh out of the oven, golden skinned and ready for carving.  What’s gone before in all the preparation and cooking will decide whether what’s on our table is safe to eat.  Here are a few tips to help you stay food safe over the Christmas season.

First and foremost, before you start any food preparation, ALWAYS wash your hands.

The turkeyChristmas Turkey

  • If it’s been frozen, make sure it is thoroughly defrosted by following the instructions on the label. Detailed guidelines on how to do this can also be found in a blog we published previously (https://catersafeconsultants.co.uk/seven-safety-tips-for-defrosting-your-turkey-this-christmas/).
  • Store it in the lowest part of the refrigerator to prevent it dripping onto anything else and contaminating it.
  • Don’t wash the turkey before you cook it. It could splash potentially harmful pathogenic bacteria around the kitchen surfaces and you run the risk of cross contamination.
  • ALWAYS wash your hands after handling the turkey and moving onto something else
  • ALWAYS wash the implements used in preparing the turkey thoroughly before using them for something else.
  • Make sure you cook the turkey thoroughly so that the juices run clear and, if you have a cooking thermometer, check that the centre has reached 75˚C.
  • Once you’ve finished and the bird is in the oven, wash your hands thoroughly.

The trimmings

  • Make sure surfaces are clean before you start preparing any food on them. Use anti-bacterial spray and a clean cloth, preferably kitchen roll which you can then dispose of.  Do this each time you move onto a different food item to prepare.
  • Make sure you use clean implements and chopping boards. On no account use any implements or boards you have used for raw meats.   ALWAYS keep raw meats separate from vegetables (e.g. the pigs in blankets).
  • ALWAYS wash your hands when you’ve finished preparing one trimming and you’re moving onto the next to avoid cross contamination.
  • Make sure everything is cooked thoroughly and piping hot, ready for your table.

 

The leftovers

  • Cover leftovers with foil or clingfilm and leave to cool.
  • Put them in the refrigerator within an hour if possible (your fridge should be set at 4-5˚C). Don’t leave them hanging about on the table or kitchen worktop as bacteria will multiply rapidly.
  • If you choose to reheat the food later or on the following day rather than eating it cold, make sure it is heated through and piping hot.

 

The guestsChristmas guests

  • Christmas comes at a time of year when there are lots of bugs and illnesses lurking around every corner. If your guests arrive with a sniffle and a handkerchief (or worse), make sure they don’t handle or serve any food and that they keep away from the kitchen.

 

Enjoy the wonderful festival of Christmas without the worry of food borne illnesses.  Follow these simple steps and precautions and we hope you have yourselves a merry little Christmas.

The Control of Allergens: Your responsibility!

If you were to take a poll of 30 random people on the street, it is likely the percentage of them who have an allergy of some description would be fairly high.  We live in an age where, if we don’t have an allergy ourselves, we know several others who do.  Allergies and intolerances seem to be a modern day phenomenon and are on the rise. Whilst a lot of people suffer mildly, for some an allergic reaction can be absolutely fatal!

There are all sorts of allergies relating to different food groups and it is imperative that, as a business, you are aware of allergens, how to store them properly and how to avoid cross contamination.  Somebody with a severe allergy to nuts, for example, could go into anaphylactic shock just through ingesting something that has simply been through the same processer.  As a producer or supplier, this could mean that you would be at fault and, in the age in which we now live where litigation cases are at an all-time high, lengthy court proceedings could ensue, something you would wish to avoid at all costs.  In fact, just this week, two men have been in the news charged with the manslaughter of a teenage girl who died from a severe allergic reaction after consuming one of their takeaway meals which contained nuts.  They were charged with ‘failing to discharge general health and safety duty to a person other than an employee’.

Businesses need to be scrupulous in their handling of allergens and it is crucial that the relevant information about what products contain or could potentially contain is communicated clearly so that consumers are not left in any doubt. In fact, when a food allergy sufferer suffers an allergic reaction, it is commonly down to two things, namely, incorrect labelling of a product, or poor communication between staff and customers.

Storage and labelling of foods containing allergens

For those businesses in the catering line, food stuffs containing allergens should be kept in separate, waterproof containers and clearly labelled, preferably with a brightly coloured sticker or icon so that it is immediately apparent to your staff when they are sourcing ingredients for items they are producing.  It is advisable to store them away from other non-allergenic items and have a separate storage area so that you minimise any opportunity for cross contamination. Moreover, staff need to proactively look for and be made aware of hidden ingredients within a product. For example, if producing a shepherd’s pie, using  Worcestershire sauce, staff must communicate that it will contain fish, as anchovies are one of the main ingredients used in Worcestershire sauce.

For those businesses which are packaging and labelling products for sale, there are clear guidelines on alerting consumers to any potential allergens.  Those items which contain an allergen should be highlighted in bold in the ingredients list. For example, a mars bar would indicate that it contains milk chocolate.  This is required by law and is considered sufficient warning for the consumer.  There are 14 different allergen types about which you are required to notify consumers and it is vital that you are aware of them all.  You can find them listed on the Food Standards Agency website.

Cleaning of machinery/equipment/surfaces after using or packaging products containing allergens

Some food producers or packagers might have a dedicated allergen-free product line or area to avoid any cross contamination but this might not be possible for every company.  For most businesses, it will be a case of ensuring there are adequate cleaning processes in place.  Machinery and equipment should be taken apart where possible and all items thoroughly cleaned to remove all trace.  Every surface should also be cleaned as meticulously.  If this is not possible, the Food Standards Agency recommends evaluating the risk and using advisory labelling or notification to the consumer if necessary.

Remember, it isn’t just equipment and machinery that pose a risk.  Even clothing might be a hazard as allergens could be transferred this way.  You should ensure your staff wear correct clothing or protective covering where necessary.

And, of course, one of the most important and simplest processes is to make sure you and your staff wash your hands thoroughly after being in contact with any allergenic product to avoid cross contamination.

Ongoing training for staff

Your business needs to show that all your staff have received adequate instruction regarding allergens and there should be a clear audit trail of training records.  The more information your employees are given, the better equipped you will be to avoid any catastrophes.

We are able to offer training at your premises to assist you in ensuring you follow best practice and put in place procedures which will help you streamline this aspect of your business.  Please contact us if you would like to find out more or would like any help with training.

Alternatively, why not take our online Allergen Awareness Course. Sign up for a free trial today!

 

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Is Food Safety an Optional Extra for food Businesses?

If you are a business owner or manager in the food industry, what would be top of your list for ensuring success and setting you apart from the rest?  The best menu, the best food or products, the newest techniques, the best décor, the best staff, the best location? Perhaps a combination of all of them or perhaps you really do lead the field in one or two and you’re a pioneering force within the industry.  But what about food safety?  Where does that feature in your list of priorities?

Food Business Operators have a legal, moral and commercial obligation to ensure the food they are producing is safe, and will not cause harm, injury or illness. With regulations and laws increasing and becoming ever tighter, good food safety procedures and training are imperative to the success of any business.  Whatever your field, inspections by your local authority are mandatory and your food safety processes will be subject to close scrutiny.

Most businesses providing food to the public will come under the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme whereby, based on the results of an inspection, you are given a hygiene rating of 0 to 5, with 5 being the highest and 0 being the lowest.  Although you might choose not to display the certificate in your window if you get a lower rating, all results are available on the Food Standards Agency website, so there is nowhere to hide.

Inspectors seek to ensure that you are creating food and food products that are safe to eat.  It won’t just be the end goods they’re looking at but the whole chain of events from its inception to the final product and all the equipment, processes, procedures, methods and systems in between.

Inspectors will also look at your advertising and product descriptions.  Are you labelling your food, your menus and products accurately or are you being deliberately ambiguous and hoodwinking customers?  Alternatively, you could be unaware that you are misleading customers and need guidance.

If you fall short in any area, inspectors will not be forgiving and enforcement officers have the power to take a number of different actions, depending on the severity of the problem.  A best case scenario would be a ‘hygiene improvement notice’ where you would have to ensure you changed certain procedures in order to meet with government standards and law.  A worst case scenario would be for them to recommend prosecution which could lead to a fine, being banned from the food industry or even imprisonment.

With such rigorous regulations, excellent food safety practices need to be in place and all staff should be trained, either to a basic or more advanced level, depending on their level of responsibility and involvement in the production process.  You can choose to improve your business by updating your décor, changing the tablecloths, updating your menu or hiring more staff but these are choices that you have the luxury of making or not making.  Food safety is not an optional extra like any of these might be, rather, it is an absolute essential to the success and safety of your business.

Remember however, that as important as compliance is, it is not an end in itself, but rather a means to an end. (Otherwise it can end-up as a mere ‘box ticking’ exercise which in the end is counter-productive). Ultimately, the most important reason Food Business Operators must take food safety seriously, is for the safety and wellbeing of their customers. That should always be the starting point. This involves:

– Protecting food from all types of contamination

– Preventing harmful bacteria from multiplying in food

– Destroying any harmful bacteria through correct processing and thorough cooking

– Disposing of any contaminated, unfit and/or suspect food.

Finally, and very importantly, managers, supervisors and team leaders can massively help implement standards and maintain a good food safety culture if they lead by example and put into practice what they preach. Hypocrisy is a big turn-off. A manager who takes a ‘maverick approach’ to food safety, or is sloppy, will often find that their staff are too – and in reality, to a greater degree.

Here are just some of the many benefits in taking food safety seriously and promoting a good food safety culture

– Reduced risk of food poisoning

– Satisfied customers

– Good reputation

– Peace of mind

– Hygienic working conditions, which leads to increased staff morale

– Legal compliance.

On the other hand, here are some of the costs of poor food safety practices

– Food poisoning and/or food safety incidents

– Increased complaints

– Poor reputation

– Less profitability

– Low staff morale

– Legal action / fines

– Imprisonment

– Closure of the business.

 

Catersafe Consultants have a wide range of training available from eLearning to a trainer coming to your premises to train you and your staff.  We pride ourselves on thorough and comprehensive training, equipping you to put in place procedures which will ensure the highest standards; standards which are crucial to your business.  Get in touch – we’d love to help you achieve those standards and be a leader in your industry.

Check out our eLearning course on how to achieve a maximum Food Hygiene Rating for your food business! Sign up for a free trial today!