A picture is worth a thousand words and, when it comes to working in a kitchen, a picture can prevent a thousand accidents. Something as simple as posting a food safety icon near a workstation can lead to a dramatic reduction in completely avoidable errors, whether it’s a warning about cross contamination (which can be deadly in the case of allergies!) or that a surface is hot.
The great thing about icons, rather than just a written warning, is that they’re eye-catching and instantly recognizable. Likewise, these visual reminders are easily understood regardless of the worker’s first language. While you can accompany these images with written warnings for additional effect, the best images are able to convey the entire idea without the use of words.
A great example is an icon for handwashing, which depicts hands rubbing against each other under a faucet. It’s easily understood at a glance and, when placed in the appropriate area, serves as a helpful reminder or encouragement for workers to wash their hands. (Needless to say, something as simple as handwashing can cut down on a lot of potential contamination!)
How Should Safety Icons Be Used?
Place safety icons around potentially dangerous areas, food and beverage workstations, food preparation areas, and around storage equipment.
Use visuals in your food safety training materials, as studies have shown that the mind is more apt to remember information when an image is present. In fact, visuals have been shown to improve learning by up to 400%.
Include safety icons in recipe cards and food packages. Putting a sticker on certain food packages can help to head off minor problems while icons on recipes can help to drive home certain safety issues.
No matter how you choose to use food safety icons, they’re a great tool for reminding workers about proper procedures which, in turn, can help to prevent customers from getting sick and thereby preserving your restaurant’s good reputation. After all, one bad review can cost you thousands of dollars in lost business.
Johnston has always stood for reliability, commitment, quality, and service. Our heritage means years of accumulated industry knowledge, the ability to see the bigger picture, and the know-how to determine the best possible approach. Combining this mastery with the drive to deliver exceptional results, Johnston goes beyond sales, developing strategic, end-to-end tailored solutions for each customer since 1881.
Don’t forget to sign up for our ServSafe class on August 16th! For more information and to register for the class, click here.
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