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Monthly Archives: July 2019

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  • Choosing the right chopping boards and tables

    Chef using a chopping board

    For commercial food businesses, choosing the right chopping boards is important in helping to maintain high standards of safety and food hygiene and in ensuring costs for replacement equipment is kept to a minimum.

    In this guide we’ll outline the options from color-coded sets which help to avoid cross-contamination, to wooden and plastic boards and tables, along with offering tips to help you ensure your boards and tables are kept in good repair.

    Colour Chopping Boards

    Plastic colour-coded chopping boards help avoid cross-contamination of food in your kitchen. Although individual businesses may have their own systems, in common practice there are six different colour-coded chopping boards which are often matched with food groups that are recommended by the Food Standards Agency in the UK.

     

    WHITE -- bakery and dairy products.

    YELLOW -- cooked meats.

    BROWN -- root vegetables such as potatoes, parsnips or turnips.

    RED -- raw meats only.

    BLUE -- raw fish only.

    GREEN -- salad, fruit and fresh vegetables.

     

     

    PURPLE chopping boards

    Purple has recently been introduced into some colour-coding food preparation systems as a board where foods which are  ‘free-from’ allergens such as gluten.

     

    Currently this colour-coding system is only recommended and as yet is not enforced by law. Wall charts or posters put up throughout food preparation areas are a good option  are available as a quick reference for employees, to help them see which colours are suitable for each task at a glance.

    We offer a range of colour-coded chopping boards, at custom sizes. See page 7 of our brochure for more information.

     

     

     

    Colour coded chopping boards

    PLASTIC CHOPPING BOARDS

    There are two main materials used to make plastic chopping boards:

    • High-density polyethylene (HDPE) - HDPE boards are often slightly more expensive, but they are stronger and more resilient to knife scratches and warping. Thicker board widths are advisable in commercial kitchens.
    • Low-density polyethylene (LDPE) - LDPE is a lightweight plastic designed to be replaced often, helping to cut out food contamination. These boards can warp and bend under high temperatures, such as dishwasher drying cycles.

    Tips for maintenance and replacement:

    • A plastic chopping board should be replaced when its surface is deeply scored. Bacteria can grow in these areas and be transferred to food, even after the board has been washed.
    • A plastic chopping board should also be replaced if it is warped. Plastic and acrylic chopping boards can ‘warp’ particularly if subjected to high heat, for example in a dishwasher during the drying phase. The bend in the board means that someone chopping is more likely to slip and injure themselves while using a knife.

     

    WOODEN CHOPPING BOARDS

    Wooden chopping boards are more resistant to bacteria growth than plastic chopping boards. Wooden boards also have a lower erosive effect on knife blades, helping your knives to stay sharper for longer. However, laminated wood boards are not usually dishwasher-safe and are therefore more difficult to clean. Wood can also be ‘scored’ to leave grooves and the boards can crack, exposing more areas for bacteria to latch on to.

    Tips for maintenance and replacement:

    • Wooden chopping boards should be replaced if they are cracked, scored, or if the seams between the boards begin to separate.
    • Wooden chopping boards should not be submerged in water, as this can cause them to warp and crack as they dry.
    • Seasoning a wooden board or table with mineral oil can help to prevent cracking. Once a month, rub the oil along the grain and removing excess oil with paper towel.
    • To clean the board, wash both sides in hot soapy water and use anti-bacterial spray to ensure any bacteria is eliminated. Air drying is the best option.
    • Keep your chopping boards upright with space between them to ensure they are kept dry, which reduces risk of bacteria growth.

    For commercial food preparation, we offer bespoke boards cut to the required size and thickness. We can also supply tables with chopping boards and sink units fitted to specific specifications to help ensure that your food preparation area is as safe and efficient as possible.

    table 4 a (2)

    If you’d like more advice on these or other products which will suit your workplace our team are happy to offer advice. Contact us on 01726 74264 or email sales@cisafety.com

     

  • Safety signage in the workplace

    3D render of set of basic Safety at work warning and information signs on white background

     

    Are you aware of the legal requirement for employers to ensure that safety signage is provided and maintained in the workplace? Here’s our guide

    Health and Safety Executive regulations in the UK require employers to ensure that safety signs are provided (or are in place) and maintained in circumstances where there is a significant risk to health and safety that has not been removed or controlled by other methods. This is only appropriate where use of a sign can further reduce the risk.

     

    Click here for a full guide to HSE regulations on safety signage.

     

    You can also get more guidance a full range of products from us.

     

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    CLICK HERE TO SEE OUR DIGITAL CATALOGUE

     

    Step one: Determining where safety signage may be needed

    To check this, it’s necessary to look to the risk assessment carried out for your workplace premises under. Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 (the Management Regulations) this risk assessment should identify hazards and risks associated with those hazards, and the control measures to be taken. For example in a noisy area, access may be restricted and those working in the area required to wear ear protection.

     

    When those control measures have been put in place there may be a significant ‘residual’ risk such that employees must be warned of any further measures necessary.

     

    Safety signs should be used if they will help to further reduce this residual risk, for example warning visitors and staff not to enter a particular area. If the risk is not significant, however, there is no need to provide a sign.

     

    It’s important to remember that safety signs are not a substitute for other means of controlling risks to employees but rather a supplement to measures that are already in place. For example, in some workplaces where there may be a risk of a foot injury, it may be appropriate to remind staff using the sign indicating that wearing foot protection is mandatory.

     

    Another point to note is that fire safety signs are regulated separately to the HSE safety signage and these may be required even where the risk assessment suggests there is no significant risk in a specific area.

     

    Step two: the different kinds of signs and choosing the correct ones to use.

     

    Safety signs may not be simply visual images and text on signboards. HSE definitions also include acoustic signals (such as fire alarms), verbal communication or hand signals.

     

    When it comes to visual signboards, the regulations set out that they should meet the following requirements:

    • Be sufficiently large and clear to be easily seen and understood.
    • Have adequate illumination
    • Size appropriate for intended viewing distance;
    • Durable, securely fastened and properly maintained (eg washed or resurfaced) to ensure they remain visible.
    • Use pictograms or symbols which are identical or similar to those shown in the HSE Signs and Safety Regulations.

     

    Generally, signs come under the following categories:

     

    J6514

    STOP: A prohibition sign – a sign prohibiting behaviour likely to increase or cause danger (e.g. ‘no access for unauthorised persons’);

    Prohibition signs are generally round with a black pictogram on white background, red edging and diagonal line (the red part to take up at least 35% of the area of the sign).

     

    warning sign

    BE CAREFUL: A warning sign – a sign giving warning of a hazard or danger (eg ‘danger: electricity’);

    Separate regulations cover hazardous substances, but generally speaking, warning signs are triangular in shape and contain black pictograms on a yellow background with black edging (the yellow part to take up at least 50% of the area of the sign).

    hard_hat_area_mandatory_sign

    AN ORDER:  A mandatory sign prescribing specific behaviour (e.g. ‘foot protection must be worn’). These signs should be round with a white pictogram on a blue background (the blue part to take up at least 50% of the area of the sign).
    safety_exit_sign

    INFORMATION: Signs giving important safety information, for example, the location of emergency exits, first aid, or rescue facilities. These signs should be rectangular or square in shape with a white pictogram on a green background (the green part to take up at least 50% of the area of the sign).

     

    fire-alarm-call-point-20171025003429

    FIREFIGHTING SIGNS

    The signs should be rectangular or square in shape with a white pictogram on a red background (the red part to take up at least 50% of the area of the sign).

    Step 3: Implementing the signs

     

    The HSE Safety Sign Regulations also set out useful points, such as ensuring that you do not put too many signs close together so that they become confusing. Acoustic signals should not be sounded together for a similar reason.

    It is also important to ensure that staff training incorporates basic knowledge and information so that workers are made aware of all safety signs used in the workplace.

    You can order signage which meets the HSE regulations and also get advice and help regarding the best signage for your workplace from us here at CIS Safety.

    Here are some examples:

     

    WET FLOOR CONE, YELLOW WITH RED TOP, 90CM HIGH, £15.29 WET FLOOR CONE, YELLOW WITH RED TOP, 90CM HIGH, £15.29

     

    SHARPS BOX WITH OFFICIAL BIOHAZARD WARNING PICTOGRAM £17.72 SHARPS BOX WITH OFFICIAL BIOHAZARD WARNING PICTOGRAM £17.72

     

    You can also get more guidance a full range of products from us.

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    CLICK HERE TO SEE OUR DIGITAL CATALOGUE

    For more details of more products or advice or information on the right safety signage for your business, call us on  01726 74264 or email us on sales@cisafety.com

Buyer, Cornwall Glass Group
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Special note - Amelia has done a great job this year for our site, quick, efficient, good follow-up and courteous, everything you need at the customer interface.
Purchasing, Food Manufacturer
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Technical Manager, Seafood
A very good local company delivering a prompt and informative service. Excellent!
Health & Safety Manager, Waste Cleansing & Drain Clearing co
A company that always performs to the word "quality", helpful with innovations in PPE, guidance and support. A company that is a valuable asset to us as a supplier.

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