When we visit a restaurant, caf or hotel to enjoy a meal, we don’t really think twice about the internal operation that is working to create and serve those delicious dishes, do we?
In reality, there is a lot going on in a commercial kitchen, and it is one of the busiest departments in a hotel. Kitchen staff work long hours; no sooner have they finished up with breakfast for guests, they need to start on lunch, and soon after that dinner, and all this in addition to specialized meals ordered by customers. So, staff in a commercial kitchen wearing their chef whites, chef aprons and hats are always running around, always working, preparing ingredients, cooking, cleaning.
The internal rules and regulations of a kitchen are far more complex however, and it’s through those rules that they ensure that there is a smooth operation in the kitchen, and that everyone knows what they are supposed to do and how they are supposed to do it. There are also certain industry standards that have to be adhered to in a commercial kitchen, which are mostly in tune with safety regulations when it comes to food preparation, which help restauranteurs avoid unnecessary legal issues when it comes to hygiene and cleanliness.
One such industry standard that kitchens adhere to is color coding the kitchen, including equipment, tools etc which are used daily for food preparation. Certain properties also have different colored uniforms for their staff, distinguishing the hierarchy of the kitchen, with the head chef wearing his chef whites, and all other chefs, cooks and kitchen staff being given different colored uniforms and chef apronsin order to easily identify them according to the job they do.
When it comes to equipment and tools, the commonly used color coding are as follows:
White – bakery and dairy products.
Blue – raw fish.
Red – raw meat.
Green – fruit, salad and fresh vegetables.
Yellow – cooked meat or raw poultry.
Brown – root vegetables.
Pink – vegan food.
Purple – allergenic food.
Black – bar use.
So, what kind of equipment do kitchens usually color code?
- Chopping boards – Food safety regulations state that a single chopping board cannot be used for raw meats, cooked meats, vegetables and fruits and other items, and this is why kitchens have sets of color-coded chopping boards, according to the usual color-coding system given above. This also helps kitchen staff to easily identify which board should be used for which item, and will not accidentally mix them up.
- Kitchen knives – Using the right type of knife is important both in terms of the safety of the user as well as ensuring food safety. In the first instance, using the wrong knife to cut certain things could result in cuts and bruises and injuries, while it is considered to be unhygienic to use one knife to cut different ingredients (similar to chopping boards). By color coding the knife handles, it makes it easier for kitchen staff, especially trainees who are yet not proficient on which knife should be used to cut which ingredient, to select the right knife they need for the job. It is also an efficient method of training junior kitchen staff regarding the different knives in use in a commercial environment.
- Tongs, brushes and Thermometers – Color coding these different types of tools is important since it ensures that each one is used only with the same types of food. Again, food preparation hygiene comes into play here, and regulations state that staff should use different tools for meats, vegetables, fruits, cooked food etc, in order to avoid contamination.
- Food packing containers – Different types of food, raw food, cooked food etc should be packed and stored in different colored containers.
What are the benefits of color coding your equipment and tools?
- It ensures food safety and reduces the chance of cross contamination of food.
- It is convenient for kitchen staff to select the right equipment for the right food items.
When a commercial enterprise makes it a priority to ensure that they conform to industry standards and laws and regulations in their industry, then it is apparent that they are concerned with providing a good service and maintaining the highest possible standards for their establishment. Whether the staff are in their chef whitesor in colored uniforms and chef aprons, it does not matter so much, but if they ensure that they are adhering to the highest level of food safety standards, then it can certainly be considered as a responsible commercial venture.
Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com
Virginia Hawthorne, a.k.a Georgie writes books and articles, which, considering where you’re reading this, makes perfect sense. She’s best known for writing fiction and fantasy. She also writes non-fiction, on subjects ranging from business strategies to world facts and historical subjects. She enjoys pizza, as should all right thinking people. She lives in the west suburb of Sri Lanka with her mother and her outrageously annoying two siblings, and two cats.