Things to Remember When Wearing Gloves For Food Safety
The foodservice industry has used gloves for decades in back-of-house operations, but today you are seeing more and more front of house employees wearing gloves for food safety. It’s important to follow proper gloving best practices no matter where you are operating in the business. These steps help you achieve your food safety goals and protect your employees.
- Choose the right glove for the job. Each of the different glove types has its own advantages and disadvantages, therefore the gloves you use should reflect your needs. Check out this buying guide breaking down the different glove types and use cases.
- Gloves can pick up germs just like your hands. Just because you are wearing gloves does not mean that you cannot pick up pathogens when you come in contact with them. It’s important to avoid touching your face while wearing gloves just like when you are barehanded.
- Avoid latex. Latex is one of the best fitting and strongest glove materials but has a serious downfall in foodservice. Latex gloves are no longer used for food handling in the US due to potential allergic reactions in latex-sensitive individuals. A great alternative is Nitrile, learn more here!
- Proper donning and doffing. Not following the proper protocol for putting on and removing gloves is one of the easiest ways to cross-contaminate. It’s crucial to execute this step well to ensure your gloves are clean and you are protected. Check out this post breaking it down step-by-step.
- Don’t wear gloves for too long. Be sure to change your gloves when:
- The gloved hand has touched anything other than food or associated equipment like clothes, face, phone, co-workers
- 10 minutes have passed in a busy foodservice situation to reduce the risk of cross-contamination
- The gloves rip or tear
- You change food handling stations
- Your food product is sticking or accumulating on the gloves
In order for gloves to be as effective as they are designed to be it’s crucial to remember and consider the list above every time you don. Gloving is one of the most important processes in maintaining food safety in the foodservice industry. Check out more food safety resources in our Food Safety Toolbox!