It’s important for food safety inspectors – and customers
The number of mobile caterers has increased rapidly over the last few years, which has increased the depth and scope of mouth-watering food options open to consumers in locations that were never an option before.
Space in a mobile food truck is of course at a premium. Nonetheless, it is vitally important for staff to be able to undertake effective hand hygiene procedures frequently, according to a recently updated article on the Huffington Post website.
The report, by Taylor Tobin, begins with a simple statement that clearly defines the requirements placed upon any mobile food business owner.
“Well-run food trucks can (and should) maintain the same standards of hygiene, cleanliness and proper temperature storage as full-scale restaurants.”
There are two groups of people that perhaps should be considered when it comes to good hand washing practices apart from the staff themselves – food safety inspectors and customers.
The Food Standards Agency’s Food Hygiene Rating Scheme is well-known to all potential consumers of food in the UK these days, and a five star food rating is a major reassurance for any potential diner. And of course a fail is potentially disastrous for the business owner. Reputation is everything…
The benefits of a dedicated hand washing station
The Huffington Post article focuses on seven things that are checked by a food safety inspector before they’d consider eating at a mobile outlet. And of course hand washing is seen as the most important. Soap and water washing is by far and away the most effective method of ensuring clean hands, which is why such appropriate facilities are required by the authorities.
The article quotes culinary instructor Melanie Underwood:
“Sometimes, it is hard to see if [a truck] has a dedicated hand-washing station, but it is ideal, preferably with liquid soap and disposable towels.”
Provide hand washing facilities for customers as well!
One final thought – a potential diner will, as stated, be very reassured by a five star hygiene rating. But they might have been out shopping for a while, touching multiple risky surfaces that could contaminate their own hands – think cash points and of course cash…
However hygienically the food had been prepared, a street food truck’s customers will already have contaminated their own hands before eating. If they fall ill – when it is in effect their own fault, they will still blame the food. And the provider of it.
So perhaps it’s time to consider providing hand washing facilities for customers as well – so that their hands can be clean before they grab that burger or wrap?
Images show the Gower Seafood Hut.
Teal mobile hand wash sinks – place them wherever they’re needed!
There are vehicle mounted, wall mounted, mains powered and free standing hand wash stations as well as mobile sinks for use with pre-heated hot water.
The Teal range of mobile sinks includes the MediWash, Hygienius and Hygienius ProWash, BigSynk, Super Stallette, TEALwash, Handeman Xtra, Compact Classic, HandSpa, CliniWash – and now the new WashStand Xtra.