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Covid-19 Advice for Food Businesses

The Government have produced some guidance notes for food businesses in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the UK. 

The Chartered Institute for Environmental Health have issued some guidance notes for food delivery and takeaway.

Advice to restaurants, cafes and retailers who are providing takeaways and deliveries during to Covid-19 outbreak

We understand that businesses need to find different ways to serve their customers through this very difficult period. Here is some advice on how to do so safely:

Remind staff about social distancing when delivering foods. Card payments over the phone are safer than cash at the door where possible. Provide staff with hand sanitiser

  • If you are doing more preparation of foods in advance than usual ensure you are able to cool foods to below 5oC within 90 minutes (60 minutes for rice) and that you have enough refrigerator space to store the chilled food safely.
  • If you will be holding food hot for over 2 hours, ensure it is kept above 63oC
  • Obtain suitable foodgrade takeaway packaging
  • Use insulated bags or boxes for deliveries for hot and cold foods
  • The vehicle used for deliveries must be kept clean inside
  • Good communication with customers about their dietary requirements, particularly allergies, is critical. Ensure that you brief delivery drivers so they can provide this information to customers. Takeaway food containers should be labelled so the right food goes to the right customer
  • If foods are supplied cold for reheating, provide adequate reheating instructions
  • Retailers delivering foods must transport chilled foods at or below 8oC or limit the delivery time so that the cold chain is maintained
  • Everything you do must be covered in your food safety management system. Review your documentation and make any amendments necessary to ensure that new activities such as deliveries are covered
  • If you are doing deliveries for the first time, ensure any vehicle is taxed, MOT’d, and insured for business use.  All staff must be properly briefed for lone working, night work and dealing with aggressive customers. 

If you need further advice please contact the Food and Safety Team 

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