When using the sous vide method, it is vital to establish procedures and policies to demonstrate that all efforts have been taken to minimise the risk from anaerobic bacteria e.g. clostridium botulinum.
Typical Steps to Establish a Food Safety Policy:
- Source only the highest quality ingredients from known suppliers and have a system of traceability in place.
- Separate food areas for raw and cooked.
- Establish minimum cooking temperatures for meat and fish.
- Adhere to maximum storage temperatures and times.
- Strict labelling of contents with date (including expiry date) and identification of contents.
- Consider using disposable sterile gloves when filling sous vide bags.
- Use two separate vacuum machines, one for raw and other for cooked foods
Put in place HACCP:
This covers the movement of food from delivery to service.
Identify points of risk – some if which may include the following:
- Quality of water in Kitchen
- Potential breaks in the ‘cold chain’
- Unnecessary ‘holding’ time
- Potential contamination points with other foods/ items in the kitchen environment
- Improper stock identification and rotation
- Time taken to cool cooked food for storage