National Restaurant Association Releases COVID-19-Specific Guidance for Operation Reopening

The National Restaurant Association today released new guidance for operation reopening which provides a basic summary of recommended practices that can be used to help mitigate exposure to the COVID-19 virus. The document is meant to be used in conjunction with instruction operators receive from authorities during their reopening phase-in.

The guidance focuses on food safety, cleaning and sanitizing, employee health monitoring and personal hygiene, and social distancing. Each section includes a list of actionable items an operation should consider as it evaluates its safety procedures.

The guidance builds on already established best practices and available requirements that address specific health and safety concerns related to the spread of COVID-19. Included in the document are highlights of the recently released Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Best Practices for Retail Food Stores, Restaurants, and Food Pick-Up/Delivery Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic.

“By combining this guidance with a restaurant’s existing policies gleaned from the FDA Food Code, ServSafe training, and recommendations from local health officials, they can help secure a safe opening,” said Sherman Brown, executive vice president, training and certification. “Adding to current best practices is an approachable way for owners and managers to put the modified protocols into practice as state and local officials begin to open communities.”

To prepare to comply with opening procedures, the guidance document advises operators to update their existing policies and operating procedures in accordance with the latest FDA, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidance and in accordance with local and state officials regarding:

  • Social distancing and protective equipment
  • Employee health
  • Cleaning/sanitizing/disinfecting

The National Restaurant Association partnered with representatives of the FDA, academia, the Conference for Food Protection, Ecolab, public health officials and industry representatives to develop the guidance.

For the most comprehensive and up-to-date COVID-19 resources and information for the restaurant industry, visit restaurant.org/COVID19.

Source: National Restaurant Association

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