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Food Safety Guide for Bakeries

Meeting food hygiene regulations, food hygiene legislation, staff training and food hazards

Food Safety Guides » Food Safety Guide for Bakeries

Meeting food hygiene regulation in bakeries

The bakery market in the UK is one of the largest markets within the whole food industry, worth a whopping £4.4 billion. According to the Federation of Bakers, almost 11 million packs and loaves are sold every day.

Three main sectors make up the baking industry in the UK:

  • In-store bakeries
  • Craft bakers
  • Large plant bakeries

 

Around 85% of the bread produced and sold in the UK comes from large plant bakeries. In-store bakeries such as those within supermarkets make up around 12% and craft bakers make up the remainder.

Food hygiene is extremely important in bakeries as they handle baked goods that are consumed by people daily, sometimes within the premises and sometimes away from it. All bakeries are inspected by the Local Authority Environmental Health Officers (EHOs) for the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme. If a bakery’s food hygiene practices are not what they should be, its food hygiene rating will reflect this. Because the rating must be displayed within the store or in the window, a poor score often turns away customers which will impact the bakery’s takings and profits.

Bakeries must be scrupulous when it comes to food hygiene including personal hygiene, storing food correctly, temperature control, cleaning and sanitation, avoiding cross-contamination and cross-contact and also avoiding pests. If these areas of food safety and hygiene are not taken seriously, there could be serious consequences for customers including making people extremely ill as well as the possibility of legal ramifications.

This Food Safety Guide for Bakeries will provide advice on how to achieve excellent food safety and hygiene standards in a bakery as well as highlight why it is of the utmost importance when running a successful bakery business.

Food safety and hygiene legislation to follow for bakeries

All food businesses in the UK must follow certain food safety and hygiene legislation to make sure that the bakery’s customers are safe when eating their products.

In the UK, there are several enforceable laws to protect consumers:

  • The Food Safety Act 1990 This Act provides a framework for all food and drink establishments to follow. The Act ensures that businesses do not put anything in food, remove anything from food, or treat food in ways that would mean it could be damaging to the health of those eating it. It also ensures that food and drink businesses serve or sell food that is of the substance, nature and quality that customers should expect and that food is labelled, presented and advertised in a way that is not misleading or false.
  • The Food Standards Act 1999 – This Act establishes the Food Standards Agency (FSA) as the body that oversees food safety laws and legislation in the UK. Its main goal is to protect public health when it comes to food and gives the FSA the power to act in the consumers’ best interests during all stages of food production, processing and supply.
  • The Food Safety and Hygiene Regulations:
    The Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013
    – The Food Hygiene Regulations (Scotland) 2006
    – The Food Hygiene Regulations (Wales) 2006
    – The Food Hygiene Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006
  • The Food Information Regulations 2014
    – These regulations stipulate that businesses must provide allergen information if a food contains any of the 14 listed allergens.
    – These were amended by the Food Information (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2019 to include Natasha’s Law.
Muffin
Bread

Natasha’s Law

Natasha’s Law came into force on 1 October 2021. This law is the legacy left following the tragic death of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, a teenager who died after suffering an allergic reaction to a baguette from Pret a Manger.

Natasha died after eating an artichoke, olive and tapenade baguette that she bought from Pret at Heathrow Airport in July 2016. On her flight, she began to feel ill and suffered a cardiac arrest. The baguette contained sesame baked into the dough which caused her body to go into anaphylactic shock. Despite her father administering two EpiPen injections, Natasha died the same day. Sesame was not listed as an ingredient on the packaging.

Before Natasha’s Law came into force, food establishments such as bakeries did not need to label food with allergens if they were made on the premises. These foods are called prepacked for direct sale, or PPDS. They can be made and packaged at the same place it is sold or offered and placed in the packaging ready for sale. It includes foods from display units or fridges (as is the case with Pret a Manger) as well as other products from behind the counter or sold at temporary and mobile outlets. It’s important to note that this law relates to packaged foods only. If food isn’t packaged, it doesn’t require labelling but the allergen information must still be readily available to the consumer.

Some examples of PPDS foods include:

  • Bakery goods or sandwiches which are packaged on-site before a customer orders or selects them.
  • Fast food that has been packaged before it is ordered. This includes products such as doughnuts, sausage rolls, biscuits and bread rolls.
  • Cookie samples that are freely distributed as sample products but which were previously packaged on-site.
  • Products that are packaged ready for sale such as pasta pots, salads and pizzas.
  • Specially commissioned products such as cakes for birthdays, weddings and “gender reveal” parties.

 

Labelling must include:

  • The name of the food item.
  • The ingredients list.
  • Any of the 14 allergens required by law listed and emphasised.

 

What happens if the legislation is not followed?

If a bakery does not follow food safety and hygiene legislation it can cause illness, harm and even death to its customers. There are also legal consequences regardless of this. These consequences include closure orders, fines and even imprisonment for those responsible for breaches of food safety laws.

A bakery on Green Lanes, Palmers Green called The Lefteris Bakery featured on a BBC programme with Mary Berry. Since then, it has been prosecuted by Enfield Council due to failings in food safety and hygiene including a cockroach and mice infestation. The bakery had to pay £25,000 in fines that related to 18 offences against Regulation 19 of the Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations (2013). There was also a £170 victim surcharge and legal costs that mounted to £2,900.

The senior Environmental Health Officer stated that the cleaning there was “appalling” with “mould growth on the walls and even the floor” as well as the cockroaches and mice.

Aside from legal action, the bakery (and others like it) will suffer in other ways:

  • Reputational damage – A bakery like The Lefterist Bakery will suffer from negative publicity as a result of any legal action or word of mouth due to breaches in food safety legislation. This can impact the trust that customers have in the bakery.
  • Loss of customers – As a result of reputational damage or due to a poor food safety rating, customers may avoid a bakery like The Lefterist. This will lead to reduced profitability which can have devastating financial consequences for a business.
  • Increased scrutiny – If a bakery has previously breached food safety legislation, it may be subject to increased scrutiny from the authorities. This will likely mean additional audits and inspections.
  • Loss of licences – Depending on the severity of the violations, a bakery may lose its licence to operate. This is a devastating outcome for a business and can lead to its complete closure.
Staff Training on Food Hygiene for Bakeries

Staff training on food hygiene for bakeries

Staff training on food hygiene in bakeries is a legal requirement. By law, all bakeries must make sure that those who prepare, handle and sell food are trained and supervised in food hygiene. This does not mean that every worker in a bakery must have their own food hygiene certificate, however.

But having food safety training and certification is the best way to show EHOs as well as the bakery’s customers that it is taking food safety and hygiene seriously. It also provides evidence of due diligence should there be an investigation for a breach in food safety legislation further down the line.

Bakery staff should have food hygiene training that is appropriate for their tasks and the area in which they work and it should be relevant to their level of responsibility.

It should include training on:

1. Personal hygiene
Staff should have training on the importance of handwashing, not working when ill and covering cuts and wounds.

2. Storing ingredients and baked goods
Staff should have training on how to store ingredients correctly including separating raw and cooked ingredients, and temperature control.

3. Preparing baked goods
Staff should be trained appropriately on how to avoid cross-contamination, cook and bake goods thoroughly and ensure that food is not left out at room temperature for too long.

4. Cleaning and sanitising preparation areas, display areas and serving areas
Bakery staff should be trained on how to clean areas properly including how to clean different surfaces and baking equipment, and how to use cleaning products and cloths safely.

5. Managing food safety
Bakery staff should know the principles of hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP) – a systematic approach to identifying any hazards and controlling potential hazards in producing baked goods.

There are different levels of food safety and hygiene certification:

Level 1
Level 1 is an introduction to food hygiene practices. This training is typically for those who handle low-risk foods such as foods that are already in packaging or already pre-prepared on-site. This level of certification is useful for those working on tills selling pre-packaged foods.

Level 2
Level 2 is a basic food hygiene certificate. This is a good choice of certification for staff who prepare, bake and handle baked goods. Most bakery workers will need Level 2 certification, particularly those who work in the bakery kitchen or who package up baked goods.

Level 3
Level 3 is classed as an intermediate food hygiene certificate. This is for those who have significant responsibilities within the bakery such as the owner, manager and supervisors as well as those involved in food safety management and HACCP systems.

Whilst this initial training is important, bakery staff should also ensure that they refresh their food safety and hygiene training every couple of years or so, especially if there have been any changes to the legislation, as with Natasha’s Law.

Food Hazards in Bakeries

Food hazards in farm shops

For most people, food hazards are something that we are naturally aware of in our day-to-day lives. However, the level of awareness of food hazards needed is different when you are working in a bakery. The FSA describes a food hazard as “something that could make food unsafe or unfit to eat”. The hazards can either be biological, chemical, physical or allergenic.

Biological

Biological food hazards are microorganisms or other living organisms. Some microorganisms can cause disease or illness in humans if they are consumed through contaminated food. The most common biological hazards in food include bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi.

  • Bacteria – Certain bacteria, such as salmonella, campylobacter and Escherichia coli (E. coli), can cause food poisoning when they are present in contaminated food.
  • Viruses – Viruses such as norovirus and hepatitis A can be spread through contaminated food and cause gastrointestinal illness.
  • Parasites – Parasites such as cryptosporidium and Toxoplasma gondii can be found in contaminated food and cause illness in humans.
  • Fungi – Some types of fungi can produce toxins that contaminate food and cause illness such as Aspergillus flavus which produces the toxin aflatoxin.

 

Chemical

Chemical food hazards refer to harmful substances that can contaminate food and cause illness or disease when consumed. Chemical food hazard substances can occur naturally in the environment or be added to food either purposefully or accidentally.

Some chemical food hazards include:

  • Pesticides – Pesticides are chemicals used in farming to control pests and diseases in crops. If used improperly or in excess, they can contaminate food and cause health problems. In a bakery, this may apply to grains that are used in the baking process before they’re refined into flour.
  • Heavy metals – Heavy metals such as lead, cadmium and mercury can contaminate food through soil and water pollution, or from the use of contaminated packaging or equipment.
  • Food additives – Certain food additives, such as artificial sweeteners, colours, preservatives and flavourings, can cause adverse reactions in some people, particularly if they are used in excess of what is considered safe.
  • Contaminants from packaging – Chemicals from packaging materials such as plasticisers and bisphenol A (BPA) can migrate into foods and cause health problems.
  • Acrylamide – Acrylamide is a chemical that forms naturally in some foods such as potatoes and bread during high-temperature cooking methods like frying, roasting or baking and has been linked to cancer. Whilst this may not be a huge risk in a bakery, it is still important for bakers to be aware of it.

 

Physical

Physical food hazards refer to foreign objects or materials that may contaminate food during the production process either accidentally or intentionally. These hazards can cause harm to customers such as choking, cuts and causing damage to teeth.

Physical hazards include:

  • Glass or metal fragments – These can make their way into food during the production process such as if a glass jar or metal equipment is broken.
  • Stones or dirt – These hazards can occur if food is not properly washed before preparing it or not properly sorted. Vegetables and salads are common places where these hazards occur. Whilst these ingredients are not often used in most bakes, some bakeries do make products containing vegetables and salad crops and, as such, it’s an important physical hazard to be aware of.
  • Bone fragments – Meat and fish products are prone to this physical hazard if they are not properly removed during processing. Again, it is rare that bakeries will handle meat and fish that is not already processed for things like sausage rolls, but it is important to be aware of which products may contain unexpected bone fragments.
  • Plastic or rubber materials – These hazards can be introduced during food packaging or equipment used during processing or handling.
  • Jewellery, hair or nails – If employees do not follow good food safety practices including good self-hygiene, hairnets, properly fitting clothing and removing jewellery before preparing food, these items can find themselves in the food being prepared.

To prevent contamination of physical hazards, bakeries should always use reputable suppliers for their ingredients such as flour. They should ensure that the suppliers screen their products including sieving, filtering or detecting any metal fragments that have found their way into the raw ingredients. When the supplies arrive, bakery staff should check the packaging and ensure that it is in good condition and is not dirty or damaged. Once the packaging is opened, the bakers should check for any infestations such as flour weevils. Bakery owners should also inspect machinery and utensils regularly for wear and tear. Regular maintenance should be carried out and any damaged items should be replaced.

Allergenic

Allergenic hazards in food are those which can cause an allergic reaction in people with food allergies. Allergens are typically proteins that are found in certain foods and when someone with an allergy consumes them, their immune system reacts by releasing histamines and other chemicals that can cause mild to severe symptoms, including anaphylaxis which can ultimately lead to death. Bakeries are often a huge risk for those with serious allergies due to the ingredients used and the increased risks of cross-contamination, particularly with gluten and egg-containing products.

Some of the most common allergenic hazards in food include:

  • Peanuts and tree nuts.
  • Milk and dairy products.
  • Eggs
  • Shellfish
  • Wheat and gluten
  • Soy

As mentioned, food safety laws mean that certain allergens must be emphasised and clearly labelled on the packaging and that food establishments like bakeries must also have allergy information available for customers on the items that they make and sell. There must also be proper allergen management controls in place. Many bakeries also provide allergen-free options such as making gluten-free, wheat-free or egg-free products for their customers.

The 4Cs

Bakeries must follow the 4Cs of food hygiene to best prevent and avoid food hazards.

The 4Cs are:

Cleaning

According to the Food Standards Agency, a lack of proper cleaning is one of the most common reasons why a food business like a bakery is prosecuted. Cleaning is essential as it prevents harmful pathogens or cross-contact allergens from spreading, getting where they shouldn’t, and contaminating foods. Cleaning also discourages pests from making a home on the premises.

Bakeries should have detailed cleaning schedules as well as cleaning procedures to ensure that the different areas of the bakery are thoroughly cleaned. This includes any food preparation areas, food storage areas and serving areas. Additionally, staff facilities such as washrooms and toilets should also be properly cleaned.

Many bakeries use a ‘clean as you go’ cleaning system whereby the bakers clean up continually as they work before doing one final clean at the end of the day.

Cooking

Most bakeries bake their goods on the premises rather than being simply a shop front for baked goods. This means that any baking and cooking must be done correctly before food is sold to customers. If a baked good is undercooked, it can mean that it is not safe to eat and could cause illness such as food poisoning if someone eats it. Foods must be cooked or baked for the correct amount of time at the correct temperature to ensure that any harmful bacteria that are present in the food are killed. Bakeries should also follow any food preparation guidelines on packaging (if present) and ensure that it is piping hot during cooking.

Cross-Contamination

Nearly all foodborne illnesses happen as a result of cross-contamination when harmful allergens or pathogens are transferred into food from surfaces, utensils, between foods and from person to food. Cross-contamination of bacteria and viruses often results in what people call “food poisoning”. When referring to allergens, the term “cross-contact” is more often used. It only takes a microscopic amount of allergen to cause an allergic reaction in some people.

Aside from pathogens and allergens, cross-contamination can occur with chemicals such as those used in cleaning, especially ones that are sprayed into the air where they can settle on food.

Bakeries must take cross-contamination and cross-contact extremely seriously. They often pose a greater risk of cross-contact than some other food and drink establishments due to their layouts, particularly artisan bakeries or home bakeries. Products like flour easily fill the air and drift across surfaces. This can mean that a wheat-free or gluten-free bake suddenly has particles of flour either within it or on its surface. Due to this risk, many bakeries do not offer products that are deemed allergen-free unless they sell pre-packaged items that were not made on the premises.

Bakeries should take the risks seriously and should have the following strategies in place:

  • All workers must practise good personal hygiene.
  • There should be separate areas for utensils and equipment if dealing with allergens.
  • Equipment and utensils should be thoroughly cleaned between uses.
  • Food should be stored correctly as per the guidance below.
  • Cleaning should be consistent and cautious.

 

Chilling
Many bakeries offer chilled goods such as flans, tarts, egg custards and sandwiches. These products must be chilled correctly and remain at safe temperatures whilst on display. Whilst chilling does not kill harmful bacteria, it does slow down their growth, meaning they should not grow to unsafe quantities. When food isn’t chilled properly, it enters the “danger zone”. This encourages pathogens to grow and increases the risk of food poisoning.

To ensure the bakery’s goods are properly chilled, the following should be in place:

Personal hygiene in bakeries

Since the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020, many more people have been aware of their own personal hygiene and how to wash their hands properly. Bakers use their hands in their work, including kneading dough, shaping and working with pastry and hand decorating items. As such, practising excellent personal hygiene is of the utmost importance – and consists of much more than simply washing hands whilst singing ‘Happy Birthday’. Regulation 852/2004 of the food safety laws stipulates the importance of having high standards in this regard.

As well as handwashing, personal hygiene includes clothing, hair, jewellery, smoking, habits and illness. If bakery workers do not take good care of their personal hygiene, the baked goods can end up contaminated with biological and physical hazards directly or through cross-contamination. Every staff member in a bakery should be trained in personal hygiene.

This includes:

  • Direction on how to wash hands thoroughly and properly before handling any foods or ingredients as well as washing hands after handling allergens and raw ingredients.
  • Having long hair tied back and secured with a hairnet. This also includes beards.
  • Having nails that are short, natural and free from nail varnish.
  • No watches or jewellery should be worn. Some bakeries make an exception for a plain wedding band.
  • Toiletries used should not be strongly scented, including perfumes.
  • Workers should wear suitable clean and practical clothing. In a bakery, this may include an apron, overall, hat and gloves.
  • Appropriate clean footwear that is slip-resistant, preferably with no laces to prevent trips and falls.
  • Chewing gum, smoking on breaks and touching the hair and face should also be discouraged.

 

When it comes to illness, bakery workers must report their illness to the manager and not attend work. This is especially important for stomach viruses such as norovirus. A worker should not return to work in the bakery until 48 hours have passed since they last vomited or had diarrhoea in gastrointestinal illnesses. For cuts and sores, brightly coloured plasters should be used to cover them, even if no infection is present.

Food Allergens in Bakeries

Food allergens in bakeries

A bakery is a place where many allergens are found. For people with allergies, encountering something that they’re allergic to in a baked good can be fatal. For most people, allergies are unpleasant or produce only mild symptoms, but severe allergies cause anaphylaxis. For this reason, many bakeries do not profess to make any allergen-free products as the risk of cross-contact is so great in this environment.

A food allergy is where the body reacts to a food due to an antibody named Immunoglobulin E (IgE). This antibody can cause a variety of symptoms, usually beginning within two hours of eating the food but often almost immediately. Essentially, the body is treating the allergen as a pathogen – an “invader” – and an immune response happens. This is the allergic reaction. Some people experience hives, itching and swelling of the tongue and/or lips. Others may experience stomach cramps, and an itchy nose or eyes. The most intense reaction is anaphylaxis, where swelling blocks the airway and the blood pressure drops. It is a ‘shock’ reaction to the allergen.

There are 14 allergens that must be listed on packaging and menus by law due to the severity of the reaction that they can cause in some people.

These are:

  • Celery
  • Cereals containing gluten such as wheat, rye, barley and oats.
  • Crustaceans, such as prawns, crabs and lobsters.
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Lupin
  • Molluscs such as clams, mussels and oysters.
  • Mustard
  • Nuts such as almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, cashews, pecans, macadamia nuts, pistachio and Brazil nuts.
  • Peanuts
  • Sesame seeds
  • Soybeans
  • Sulphur dioxide and sulphites (at concentrations of more than 10mg/kg or 10mg/litre).

 

In a bakery, the most common allergens found are wheat, milk and eggs. Milk and eggs often produce severe reactions in those who are allergic, including anaphylaxis. However, unlike milk and eggs, there have been no known recorded deaths from anaphylaxis due to wheat consumption.

Whilst some people have a wheat allergy, most have an intolerance or suffer from coeliac disease. Coeliac disease is where the body has an auto-immune response to the gluten found in grains like wheat, barley, rye and oats. Whilst this is extremely unpleasant and involves the immune system, it’s not an allergy per se and does not pose the risk of anaphylaxis.

In a bakery, allergen information should be available on packaging or labels if the baked goods were prepared on-site and pre-packaged for sale (PPDS) as per Natasha’s Law. Allergen information should also be readily available in documents and folders and on menus or posters within the bakery by law.

When preparing baked goods on-site or when handling them to distribute to customers, bakeries should take precautions to ensure products with allergens are handled properly to avoid cross-contact.

This includes:

  • Ensuring that allergenic hazards are included in HACCP systems and controls are put in place.
  • Providing training on allergens for staff, including what to do in emergencies if a customer has an allergic reaction.
  • Looking for allergenic ingredients on purchased products before using or supplying them (i.e. Worcestershire sauce contains anchovies which is a type of fish).
  • Preparing products containing allergens in a separate area from non-allergenic products, for example using different coloured chopping boards.
  • Storing allergen-containing products separately from non-allergen-containing products.
  • Cleaning surfaces and utensils thoroughly between uses where separate equipment is not possible.
  • Checking pre-packaged ingredients thoroughly for allergens especially considering many pre-bought items can change ingredients or formulation without warning even if you have used the product before.
  • Labelling containers with any allergens stored within them.
  • Recording information regarding allergens accurately, including on-shelf labels or ingredient labels and recipes.

Unlike pathogens such as bacteria, allergens are not affected by heating or cooling. As a result, bakeries should be extra careful when handling any allergens and proceed with caution if a customer reports an allergy. Many bakeries state that they handle all 14 allergens on the premises and cannot guarantee that their products are free from certain allergens, to be on the safe side.

Safely Storing Food in a Bakery

Safely storing food in a bakery 

Food should be stored correctly in a bakery to maintain the quality of the baked goods as well as prevent any foodborne illnesses.

There must be stringent systems in place when it comes to storage, including:

  • Storing food at the right temperature. The refrigerator should be kept at or below 5°C and frozen food at or below -18°C. Some bakeries keep items warm so they are ready to eat. To keep hot food hot, it should be at or above 63°C.
  • The temperature of the fridge and freezer should be checked regularly to ensure that they are working correctly.
  • Storage containers should be food-safe and should be labelled with the name of the food and the date it was stored as well as labelling any allergens within it to ensure proper and safe storage.
  • Food should be stored in clean, dry and well-ventilated areas to prevent the growth of bacteria and mould.
  • Advice for specific food storage should be followed. For example, potatoes, tomatoes and bananas should not be stored in the fridge.
  • Rotate food regularly to ensure that older food is used up first. Have a system with first-in-first-out (FIFO) stock rotation.
  • Dispose of any spoiled or out-of-date food promptly.

 

Hot holding

Some bakeries may keep food such as pies and pasties in heated units on display. This provides an opportunity for bacteria to grow if the temperature is not correct. As mentioned in the list above, hot food should be kept at 63°C or above to prevent this from occurring. If it is kept below this temperature for over two hours, it cannot be safely consumed.

By following these safe storage rules, bakeries can meet the necessary food safety legislation to prevent their customers from coming to any harm.

Safely Serving Food in a Bakery

Safely serving food in a bakery 

In a bakery, baked goods are often on display on counters and are chosen by the customer before being packaged for sale. Items mustn’t be contaminated during handling and packaging. Utensils should be used to handle food, if possible, rather than hands. If using tongs, they should be cleaned regularly, preferably between uses if they are handling different items that may contain allergens. If utensils are not used, the staff should wear disposable gloves. The staff handling the food should be trained in the importance of good personal hygiene.

Waste Management in a Bakery

Waste management in a bakery

Bakeries often produce substantial waste including food waste and packaging waste. Handling the waste effectively in a bakery is essential as, if it is poorly managed, it can result in problems with pests. Waste also increases the presence of bacteria and viruses. Food that is not disposed of correctly can also rot, which will increase the risks of pests as well as cause an unpleasant aroma for customers or nearby businesses. Waste in a bakery should be separated into appropriate containers.

Waste management in a bakery should include the following principles:

  • Removing waste regularly from food areas to avoid accumulation.
  • A good number of bins that are accessible inside the bakery and also outside.
  • Bins allocated to different waste types including food and recycling.
  • Bins operated by foot pedals to avoid touching them by hand.
  • Lidded bins that are secure to avoid pests having access to the contents.
  • Cleaning bins regularly and using suitable bin liners.
  • Regular emptying of bins.
  • Locking outdoor bins when not in use.
Pest Control in a Bakery

Pest control in a bakery

Pests and bakeries do not mix. You only have to read about The Lefterist Bakery’s cockroach and mice infestation above to start itching and twitching. Thankfully, since the prosecution, the bakery has changed hands.

Pests are not just limited to mice and cockroaches.

They include:

  • Rodents – including rats and mice.
  • Insects such as cockroaches, flies and ants.
  • Stored product pests such as flour weevils, merchant grain beetles, and Indian meal moths.
  • Birds – pigeons, house sparrows or other birds nesting on the premises can be problematic. Seagulls can also be troublesome outside of a bakery.

Preventing infestations of pests in a bakery is essential to the good running of the business as well as complying with the law.

Bakeries should prevent and control pests by:

  • Keeping the bakery clean and tidy. This includes cleaning the floors, walls and counters. Food spills should be cleaned promptly.
  • Disposing of waste correctly, particularly food waste as this is what attracts pests the most. Bins should be tightly sealed.
  • Storing food correctly in tightly sealed containers. Containers should not be on the floor to prevent pests from entering them. When a food delivery arrives, the contents should be inspected carefully to make sure no pests are being introduced to the bakery.
  • Sealing any pest entry points such as cracks and gaps around windows, pipes, doors and floor. This will help to prevent pests from entering the bakery.
  • Using products if pests are suspected to catch and/or eliminate them.
  • Hiring professionals in to clear any pest infestations so that the job is done properly.
  • Training the staff who work in the bakery to promote the importance of good practices within the bakery and how to prevent pests.

By following such tips, the bakery and its customers can be sure to be as safe as possible.

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