12 Ways to Keep your Restaurant Safe from Coronavirus (COVID-19)

May 6, 2020 | Commercial Cleaning

Amidst the unprecedented health crisis due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic all over the world, one of the hardest hit industries is the Hospitality industry. With social gatherings being restricted, most restaurants, cafes, bars, pubs, and other eateries have been forced to shut down.

Nonetheless the novel coronavirus is a respiratory disease and not a foodborne disease – according to a report from the WHO (World Health Organization) and FAO (Food And Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) “there is no evidence to date of viruses that cause respiratory illnesses being transmitted via food or food packaging”. Furthermore, the report states that the virus depends on animal or human hosts to spread.

Are restaurants operating during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Currently some restaurants, cafes, and bars have started to open for business. Most have limited their services to takeaway or deliveries, while some allow a limited number of clients inside their facility as long the employees and customers follow proper hygienic procedures.

Having conducted COVID-19 Cleaning in Manchester and other parts of the UK, here are a few hygiene and safety tips that all restaurant owners may find helpful while operating during this pandemic.

1. Employ contactless payment options and discourage physical contact

Restaurant owners should discourage the use of cash payment, since it increases the risk of contamination. Restaurants and bars can use cashless payment systems which are already quite common and convenient to use. Customers can also be encouraged to switch to cashless by offering discounts or cashback offers upon purchase.

Cashless payment also makes it easier for you to manage your own finances and is less of a hassle to deal with than physical cash.

2. Strictly enforce hygienic practices to eliminate Coronavirus

It goes without saying that employees should be washing their hands frequently with soap and water regularly. They should also be washing their hands every time they enter the kitchen, or return from outside the restaurant premises.

Employees who cannot always be washing their hands can be given hand sanitisers at their stations which they should be using after any interaction with customers.

3. Restrict the number of employees in the restaurant to decrease contamination

As mentioned in our previous blog, it is best to decrease the number of employees working to reduce the chance of COVID-19 spread. If you are not operating at full capacity then it is safer to make certain employees take paid leave.

If possible, station employees further away from each other as well.

4. Masks and disposable gloves can reduce the possibility of contamination

Disposable gloves and masks can prove extremely useful in eliminating the transmission of coronavirus, but only if it is used properly.

Disposable masks reduce the risk of transmission of saliva and cough droplets between employees. Disposable gloves can be used during disinfecting personal or office items.

Dispose of the used masks and gloves in proper trash cans away from areas where they may be misplaced or create cross-contamination and also double bag the rubbish bag when disposing.

5. Limit the number of customers allowed inside and reduce the spread of Coronavirus

One of the best methods to combat the Coronavirus is to practice social distancing. Hence, it is important to limit the number of people allowed inside the restaurant to limit the risks of transmission between employees and customers.

6. Queue control outside the cafe with adequate physical distancing

To avoid overcrowding and to practice proper social distancing, introduce a method of queue control outside the restaurant. Something as simple as drawing circles on the ground can be done to ensure customers comply with social distancing rules.

In addition to this, make regular announcements to the customers to remind them of social distancing in public areas.

7. Encourage delivery and takeaway to avoid possible COVID-19 contamination

Delivery of food and takeaway is the best possible way for restaurants and cafes to keep operating while still keeping the chance of COVID-19 contamination at the lowest possible.

While providing food delivery during this pandemic, make sure that all delivery personnel are wearing protective gear such as masks and gloves. They should also avoid contact with any customers – ideally the payment should also be done digitally (or cashless) and the food items should be handed over without touching the customer.

Delivery personnel should also be very careful in wiping their delivery bags with disinfectant before each delivery.

8. Make sure all kitchen supplies and cooking tools are not contaminated with Coronavirus

Another way to keep your restaurant, cafe, bar or pub business safe from the Coronavirus is to make disinfectants, wipes and sanitizers available in the kitchen area at all times so that employees and other surfaces may be sanitised regularly with ease.

Most commonly used kitchen items must be washed and sanitised as much as possible.

9. Wipe all surfaces with disinfectant and other virocides

Make sure that all surfaces such as tables and counters are regularly cleaned (about every 30 minutes) with food-friendly disinfectants and virocides to ensure that your restaurant is clean and free of Coronavirus.

10. Prevent Coronavirus by provide hand sanitizers to all customers

To minimise the risk of transmission, restaurants and cafes should place hand sanitisers at all locations throughout the restaurant premises. Customers should be encouraged to use these freely to keep their hands clean.

11. Use thermal body scanners or temperature guns to detect COVID-19

One of the most common symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a fever – restaurants owners should purchase and use some type of thermal scanning devices to detect if any customer exhibits high body temperature which may signify a possible Coronavirus infection.

These types of thermal body scans must be done before they enter the premises – if they are sick and / or show symptoms of Coronavirus, or if the employees suspect the customer is infected for any reason, then it is best to politely ask the customer to opt for delivery the next time.

Please note though that thermal scanners can be inaccurate in many situations – this is usually in the case of poor quality devices and improper scanning.

12. Hire a specialised Coronavirus Cleaning Service

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) has proven to be a deadly and contagious virus that can spread easily, especially when people are not thorough enough, and at the end of the day, restaurant employees are best at running and operating a restaurant.

Specialised Coronavirus Cleaning companies have employees trained in this specific type of cleaning. They are equipped with the most effective disinfectants and chemicals as well as the right type of protective equipment.

Not only can COVID-19 Cleaning services provide manpower, they can also provide you with certification in case you need it to operate during this pandemic, or even to make your employees and customers feel safer.

Book a Specialised COVID-19 Cleaning Solution for your Restaurant

Is your restaurant or cafe looking to operate during the COVID-19 pandemic? Contact us now for a FREE pre-booking* by calling us at 0161 724 8999, or emailing us at enquiries@innovatefm.co.uk.

*Terms & conditions apply.