Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures Blog

Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOPs) Servsafe New York

Maid service cleaning glass table with chemicals spray and rag

A set of written instructions that outline the who, what, when, why, and how to clean and sanitize food handling equipment. The SSOPs often include methods to utilize when verifying the effectiveness of cleaning activities.

SSOPs are essentially the procedures for how to keep the operation clean and sanitary. SSOPs are established through a combination of manufacturer’s recommendations, scientific data, process studies, and chemical requirements. All SSOPs should include not only how to clean and sanitize but also who is responsible for the cleaning, verification, and, where appropriate, validation activities. The frequency (when and how often) is defined to reduce the risk of product contamination. The equipment needed to properly clean and sanitize the food handling equipment is also included (such as brushes, towels, brooms, etc.) The SSOPs serve as a prerequisite program to proactively control food hazards, especially microbiological hazards. When developed, implemented, and properly followed, the SSOPs can help to prevent, eliminate, or reduce microbiological, physical, and chemical hazards.

Example: A food processing factory has a written procedure for cleaning a batch tank using a clean in place (CIP) system to clean and sanitize this food contact equipment. This SSOP defines the chemical concentration that is required to adequately clean the piece of equipment, the temperature in which the wash and rinse water should be, and the time at which the system should be set. Deviations from the SSOP may result in a lack of proper cleaning and subsequent microbiological concerns, allergen cross contact, and possible cross-contamination concerns. Monitoring of correct chemical concentrations and maintaining sanitizer levels below 200 ppm is required to avoid chemical hazards in food products.

It is key that on hire any kitchen or waiting staff be knowledgeable about proper sanitizing. Proper sanitizing of product containers, food utensils and food contact surface is fundamental.

Taking a course the Food Manager’s Safety course and exam with Westchester Food Safety will help any kitchen staff or Managers be up to date and ready to implement these useful skills sets.

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