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5 Tips to Maintain Proper Food Storage in Restaurants

5 Tips to Maintain Proper Food Storage in Restaurants

It is very essential to store food in restaurants in a proper manner. You need ingredients bins, shelving and storage racks in all shapes and sizes to keep the food fresh – separated and ready to prepare meals.

By storing food at the proper temperature, minimising food handling and separating groceries to avoid cross contamination, you can help maintain food quality, given how perishable they are. Proper storage solutions will also keep the bacteria and germs at bay as these can result in food poisoning.

To avoid spoilage, stock usage of commercial food is done by the method of “first in, first out”. This means that the food that is oldest and acceptable is used first. And storage containers help you to organise and manage this process, ensuring that out of date food is never served.

Let’s take a look at how this can be better managed!

Must Read: 5 Ways to Manage Restaurant Food Costs

1. Proper Storage of Food

Using the right method of storage will help you in prolonging the life and freshness of the food ingredients, not to mention it will save your cost by minimising the amount of waste occurrence. Safety and hygiene are crucial to proper storing of food items. Incorrect handling and preparation are regarded as the major causes of food induced illnesses, but food storage hygiene is often neglected. Inadequate storage is equally to blame as these will then result in poor food preparation which can lead to cross contamination. Hence, it is vital for restaurateurs to plan and implement proper storage solutions, one that prioritises hygiene over everything else.

2. Stock Rotation

Stock rotation is crucial in every kitchen. Using FIFO (first in, first out) method ensures that food closest to its ‘use by day’ is used before it goes off. It is a very simple and effective process that prevents old food from being left in shelves or at the bottom of the freezer. It also helps in reducing the food waste as you will be using everything before it goes bad, not to mention it will minimise your costs as well.

3. Food Labelling

As soon as the food arrives in the kitchen, make sure that kitchen staff knows what is what by labelling all the stock. Labelling the food by sticky notes is an inexpensive way of displaying use-by-dates. Labelling your stock as soon as it arrives and putting it into the FIFO system will ensure that you have proper control and organisation of your stock. Potentially hazardous food such as allergens can be separated with the help of labels.

4. Meat Storage

Food storage at the right temperature will prevent bacteria from growing. The risk of bacteria growth is highly likely at the temperature of 8°C. Because of this, it is a legally required that your fridges must be kept below the temperature of 5°C. However, it is recommended to keep it within the range of 1-4°C especially when storing meat, chicken or fish.

Temperature for the storage of frozen food is to be kept at -18°C. It is recommended to steer clear of overstocking your fridge and freezers as this can hinder the proper circulation of air which can create hot spots where bacteria can grow. The temperature of cooling units should always be monitored and kept in check properly at all times.

5. Using Kitchen Cupboards

Cupboards can make the frequently used ingredients and food items more accessible in the kitchen area. You can opt for robust cupboards made from stainless steel as these are high on the hygiene quotient, functional and easy to maintain. If you have a compact kitchen space, select a cupboard with sliding doors as you can have easy food storage option without compromising on the quality and efficiency that it brings to you.

Proper food storage not only helps save money, time and wastage but increases the efficiency of your kitchen significantly. Better cost management and food safety will play a significant role in maintaining the quality and standard of your kitchen.

So ensure that even if you don’t have state of the art appliances and storage options at your disposal, you’re not cutting corners when it comes to food storage.

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