Using Your Chopping Boards Safely
Without a combination of safe practices in your kitchen, colour coding your boards won’t eliminate all the risks of cross-contamination. Below, we outline a few rules to follow to maintain a high standard of food hygiene with chopping boards in your kitchen:
Clean Between Uses
Clean and disinfect your chopping boards (and knives) between uses, even if you are preparing ingredients that fall within the same food group. This helps to avoid contamination and reduces the risk of spreading allergens.
It is an important step that many don’t consider. For example, some beef may be safe to serve raw. However, if you have just used the red chopping board to prepare raw chicken, you may contaminate the beef, making it unsafe to eat.
Not only should your chopping boards follow a colour-coding system, but the accompanying knives should also be colour coded based on the item that they are chopping. This, like the boards, offers a visual cue to staff in the kitchen, ensuring that knives aren’t carrying bacteria from one food group to another.
Swap Your Boards
You must ensure that no chopping board is used for more than a few hours at a time, even when preparing the same type, or exactly the same food. This increases the risk of bacteria growth, which is a prominent risk in a warm kitchen environment. Ensure you have multiples of the same coloured chopping boards and swap them out regularly, at least every hour.
We cover many of these topics in-depth in our online Food Hygiene course. If you’d like to learn more about the certification and its benefits, why not read one of our recent blogs - ‘How Long Does a Food Hygiene Certificate Last?’