Purchase food and its ingredients from reliable and approved sources. Do not buy from questionable sources:
- Stay connected with suppliers and, if necessary, request for relevant supporting documents, including business licences, official export documents and health certificates, certificates of origin, laboratory reports, etc.
- Conduct annual inspection or audit on suppliers. Qualified suppliers will be selected as a reference for purchasing the next year, and the list of reliable suppliers will be updated on a regular basis.
- Ascertain that suppliers have obtained the required valid licenses issued by the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department.
- Upon delivery, suppliers must provide a copy of testing reports for each batch of products. The reports must be stamped or signed.
- Update suppliers' information timely.
- Provide full copies of supporting documents such as business registration, health certificates, and any other system certification documents (if necessary).
- Keep all purchasing and sales records, receipts, food origin and hygiene-related documents to facilitate food tracing in the event of a food incident.
Upon receipt of food, the following items should be inspected:
- Fruits and vegetables are undamaged and free of bruises. No cracked or leaky eggs and no mouldy dried foods should be received.
- All prepackaged foods have an expiry date, such as "use by" or "best before" dates.
- The outer packaging should be intact with no tears. Canned foods are not bulging, dented or rusty. The packaging materials are clean and undamaged.
- Store chilled food at 4°C or below, and frozen food at -18°C or below.
- Each batch of seafood (including oysters) must be attached with a valid health certificate.
- If it is found or suspected that the food is unsafe, has been stored at an improper temperature for an extended period of time, has been contaminated or damaged, or is required to be recalled, it must be immediately returned to the suppliers and separated from normal items during temporary storage.
Store food properly. Food should be kept at safe and appropriate temperatures and used in a first-in-first-out (FIFO) manner:
- Store incoming goods properly as soon as possible: Perishable food should be wrapped or put in a container within two hours before placing in the refrigerator. Airtight containers prevent moisture loss while reducing cross-contamination or physical (foreign objects) hazards to food.
- Do not leave or divide food ingredients outside the food premises to avoid the risk of food exposure to dangerous temperatures, infestation and environmental contamination.
- Keep chilled food in the refrigerator at 4°C or below and frozen food in the freezer at -18°C or below. Food packages should be labelled with the storage date. Make sure the refrigerator is not overcrowded to allow circulation of cold air.
- Foods that can be stored at room temperature (e.g. canned foods) or dried foods (e.g. flour, rice, beans, potatoes and spices) should be stored in a clean, dry and cool place.
- Read food labels carefully and verify the shelf life of foods stored in the chiller / freezer.
- Attach the date of food processing and any other necessary information to food in order to apply the first-in-first-out (FIFO) principle to stock rotation. Do not consume food that has gone beyond its expiration date.
- All refrigeration devices should include a temperature display, which is monitored and reported twice a day. If any deviations higher than 1°C are identified, checking of the devices is warranted.
Bacteria can grow rapidly when the food is kept at dangerous temperatures between 4℃and 60℃ (e.g. room temperature). Therefore, it is important to keep all foods, high-risk food in particular, away from the Temperature Danger Zone.
A FIFO stock rotation system enables the safe use of raw materials. According to the principle, you have to arrange items on shelves in such a way that the oldest items are used first.