The Seven Basic Steps – Sanitation Procedures

These are basic generic procedures, and are not meant to be comprehensive instructions. They are only basic guidelines to give a general idea of what should be accomplished during sanitation operations. Specific areas may require specific procedures.

1. Dry Pick-up

This includes the removal of all trash, inedible material (place in properly marked containers), covering sensitive electronics and switches, breakdown/disassembly of machinery in preparation for cleaning.

2. Pre-rinse

Rinse all soils from equipment surfaces, starting from the top, and rinsing to floor. This is one of the most important steps. The equipment should appear free of all visible soil particulate. Any heavy soils left on equipment will prevent detergents from effecting that area.

3. Wet Pick-up

Squeegee, shovel, and/or broom (nylon bristled) floor solids to a central area, and place in a proper inedible container. Allow as little soils as possible, from going down drains. This will prevent drain back-ups, and reduce effluent costs.

4. Detergent Application

Apply proper foam or detergent, covering all surfaces completely, especially food contact surfaces. 1 1/2- 2 inches of foam thickness is adequate. Any thicker, and the foam becomes heavy and has a tendency to fall off the equipment prematurely. Many feel the best method of foam application, is from “bottom to top method” to prevent streaking. Allow the foam to remain in contact with surfaces for 15-20 minutes. It is advantageous to scrub the foam into known heavy soil areas. Allowing foam to dry out, on surfaces, may cause detergent filming.

5. Post-Rinse

Thoroughly rinse foam off of equipment surfaces (many employ the “bottom to top” method, here also). If the surfaces are clean, post rinse water will “sheet” off equipment. Soiled areas will appear “waxy” and rinse water will run around these areas. Extra rinsing, hand scrubbing, and/or detergent strengthening may be indicated.

6. Inspect and Touch-up

Sanitors should thoroughly examine all previously cleaned surfaces to ensure that they are completely free of any soils or discrepancies. Food contact surfaces are paramount, but attention should be given to non-food contact surfaces as well. A thorough inspection by the person who cleaned this area will reduce the likelihood of QA, or government, finding problems. NO ONE should know these areas better than the person who cleans it every night. While inspecting, the sanitor should have hand-scrubbing detergents and a scrubbing pad (green pad) to correct any soil discrepancies, immediately upon discovery.

7. Sanitize

Utilizing the proper sanitizer solution, all surfaces should be thoroughly flood sanitized. Particular attention should be paid to food contact surfaces, but non-food contact surfaces should receive sanitizing as well. This step is “insurance” and should NOT be relied upon for sanitary equipment. Food processing equipment should demonstrate negative bacterial swab results, before sanitizing, as well as after.

We, at LW Chemicals, Inc., stand ready to assist your sanitation operation, and provide more comprehensive information on cleaning, upon the utilization of our services. Contact us today.