When one owns a restaurant in Canada, they have to follow strict health regulations. In Canada, each province is responsible for implementing health codes and regulations for restaurants. The purpose of these health regulations is to ensure cleanliness and prevent illness, especially preventing diseases and illnesses that can be dangerous to one’s health.
Across Canada, restaurant and food service inspection is performed by provincial governments, municipalities, or regional health authorities. As well, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency is involved with protecting people from unsanitary food and restaurant practices.
Although Canadian provinces implement their own health codes and practices, the following are common general health safety requirements for running a clean and healthy restaurant:
- There should be a minimal risk of food contamination.
- Restaurant operations are conducted in a sanitary way. Restaurant supplies and surfaces are non-toxic and cleaned and sanitized properly.
- The restaurant will practice appropriate cleaning practices, including washrooms.
- Staff must practice proper sanitation methods. There should be suitably located hand-washing facilities
- Restaurant should not be an environment that breeds insects, rodents and other pests.
- Dishware and other cookware are cleaned properly using the appropriate dish detergent and water pressure, temperature, and volume.
- Adequate sanitary storage facilities should be available for foods, supplies, cleaning supplies and chemicals…etc.
- There must be appropriate refrigeration.
- After handling raw meat, poultry and seafood, one must wash their hands.
- There should be proper cleaning and disinfection of cutting boards and cutting/slicing machines.
- Food should be free of mold, spoilage, and bacteria.
- Staff should be working in a non-toxic environment.
- Food storage areas should be clean, neat, and dry.
- Garbage cans should be emptied regularly.
- A restaurant should have the appropriate fire safety devices such as smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
According to CRFA’s Food Safety Code of Practice, “over 8.5 million Canadians develop food borne illness each year, of which 39,000 end up in the hospital and as many as 600 die.” It is vital and the law in Canada that a restaurant meet and exceed the health codes and regulations. It is important to contact your local government to find out the specific regulations. One will need to pass a health inspection before receiving a license to open and run a restaurant.
As well as being the law, the cleanliness of a restaurant is a key component of making a restaurant a success. A poorly kept restaurant can result in a bad reputation and even food poisoning. As well, a health inspector can shut a restaurant down for not following the mandated health codes and regulations. Fortunately, it is easy to establish a health plan that all staff can follow in order to avoid any problems. All restaurant managers and their staff should be familiar with the contents of their province’s health regulations and codes.