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Applying HACCP to the Food Handling Cycle: Ordering, receiving and storing

In this article we will discuss applying HACCP to the stages of ordering, receiving and storing food.
Food with date labels
© International Culinary Studio

To minimise the risk of food contamination, you need to consider all the steps involved in food preparation and sales process. This is referred to as the catering cycle!

At each step of the food handling cycle, it is important to identify and remove potential causes of contamination. You also need to monitor and record temperatures of commodities, prepared foods and storage and display areas.

Other records that must be kept are training, pest control, cleaning schedule and stock rotation records.

In the next few articles we will discuss how to deal with each stage in the catering cycle.


When ordering, ensure that you have clear product specifications and good standards for quality, as well as delivery and hygiene procedures.


All deliveries should be systematically checked on arrival against the order:

  • The temperature of goods is tracked in transit and at time of delivery.
  • Temperature of goods on delivery is correct.
  • Inspect ALL items for any signs of contamination or damage.
  • Make sure raw and cooked foods are not kept together during the delivery process.


Ensure that food is stored according to requirements:

  • Cold and frozen food must be stored in the appropriate storage facility at the correct temperature, e.g., frozen food in a sealed freezer below minus 18°C / minus 0.4°F
  • Keep items separated and stored according to their potential for cross-contamination, For example, cooked foods on the top shelf, raw foods lower down, all food must be covered.
  • If there is no labelling, date label all products.
  • Regularly check use-by dates and quality indicators such as freezer burn.
© International Culinary Studio
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Introduction to HACCP for Food Safety

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