Health & Safety – The Four Cs in Food Hygiene

Good food hygiene is all about controlling harmful bacteria which in turn can cause serious illness.

There are four things to remember when dealing with food hygiene and they are known as the 4 Cs. These 4 Cs will help you prevent the most common food safety problems within the industry.

  • Cross-contamination is one of the most common causes of food poisoning.

Cross-contamination; this is when bacteria are spread between food, surfaces or equipment. This is most likely to happen when raw food touches ready-to-eat food equipment or surfaces.

  • Cleaning and cleanliness

Effective cleaning is the best way to get rid of bacteria on hands, equipment and surfaces. Cleaning helps and protects to stop harmful bacteria from spreading onto food.

  • Chilling and keeping food fresh

Keeping food chilling properly helps to stop harmful bacteria from growing. Some food requires it to be kept chilled to keep bacteria from growing, such as prepared salads and desserts. It is very important not to leave these types of food at room temperature.

  • Cooking

Thorough cooking kills harmful bacteria in food, so it is extremely important to make sure that food is cooked properly. When cooking or reheating food, always check that it is steaming hot all the way through.

With foods such as poultry, pork and rolled joints it is especially important to make sure that you thoroughly cook them, other products made from minced meat, such as burgers and sausages will also require thorough cooking because there could be bacteria in the middle of these types of products.

If you need guidance on your health and safety obligations please call 0845 224 7013 or email

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