Food safety and monitoring is an essential responsibility of the foodservice industry, where unsafe temperatures or improper preparation can have a very real impact on public health.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, as many as 48 million people get sick from foodborne diseases each year, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 Americans die each year from eating unsafe food.1
How is technology improving food monitoring practices to prevent these injuries and helping business owners meet the requirements of new legislation?
Changes in Industry Standards
Congress enacted the FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) to shift food safety efforts from treating outbreaks of foodborne illness to actively preventing them.1 These efforts not only protect the community from contaminated food in the supply chain, but protect the financial well being of the foodservice industry.
This trillion-dollar industry ranges from food production and manufacturing to ready-made meals purchased at restaurants, carryout operations, cafeterias, university dining halls, catering and vending companies, hotels and inns, and rehab and retirement centers.. When a foodborne illness breaks out, it harms not only affected customers, but also the confidence of consumers in the brands that were involved in the incident. Failing to implement proper food monitoring and quality control processes leaves your business open to potential lawsuits, fines, or being shut down for compliance issues and worst of all loss of loyal customers.
Food Monitoring Protects Public Health
Food monitoring protects the quality and safety of our food supply by requiring that food be handled safely at every step of the process. Implementing temperature monitoring and best practices to prevent contamination allows foodservice businesses to track the history of each item and identify issues before they make anyone sick.
Food monitoring in the food service industry requires that refrigerators, coolers, and freezers have reliable temperature monitoring. Modern food safety systems feature wireless, remote technology that alerts employees and management when food storage temperatures fall into the danger zone.
Food safety requirements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) outline procedures to prevent cross-contamination between food products, or between cooked and raw foods. All foodservice types of owners must have a reliable food monitoring system in place to track freshness and dispose of foods that are no longer safe to sell or serve.
These food monitoring guidelines require a plan that utilizes checklists to monitor compliance and gather data to demonstrate progress in your food safety initiatives.2 Your plan should specify the frequency of monitoring and the safe temperatures required for hot, cold, and frozen foods. Checklists must then be completed on time and the data kept available for periodic inspection and potential audits.
Benefits of Food Monitoring Systems
Using the latest technology for remote food temperature monitoring from ComplianceMate offers many benefits to the foodservice industry:
- Collecting accurate data automatically
- Streamlined workflows
- The ability to analyze data across multiple locations or over time with customized reporting
- Simplifying compliance with federal, state, and local food safety requirements and preventing costly fines or audit worries
- Actively avoiding and preventing outbreaks of foodborne illness with accurate information about the handling and safety of every food item
- Preventing dangerous consequences of human error in manual records and by alerting management in real time to missed checklists or dangerous food temperatures
Implementing Better Food Monitoring
You can view all your food safety information in a single custom dashboard and protect your customers and brand reputation with all the equipment and guidance you need.
If your foodservice business has not yet implemented a food monitoring technology system, contact us today for a free demo and advice on how a wireless temperature monitoring system and automated checklists can improve your operations, save employee time, prevent costly mistakes, and protect the health and safety of your customers.