If you own a restaurant, there may be no more bittersweet requirement than a health inspection. Passing a health inspection is a great feeling—it means you’re doing things right, your restaurant is safe, and you are free to open your doors. However, inspections are frequent, thorough, and can make or break your business. Failing an inspection is devastating, and the damage to your reputation could be irreparable. That’s why preparation for health inspections is just as important as regular cleaning and sanitation is, especially when it comes to controlling pests.
If you want to approach your next pest inspection with peace of mind, check out these five helpful tips you can follow in order to properly prepare.
Know What Pest Control Efforts You Are Using
Pests are only one aspect of your health inspection, but they are a large aspect and might be the single most important part. Pests are particularly unwanted because they carry illnesses and diseases that can be easily transferred through food, and an unclean kitchen full of pests is very likely to transmit one of these illnesses.
As a part of your inspection, your inspector will probably ask you several questions about what sort of methods you are employing to keep common pests at bay. This will include rodents like rats and mice, but also insects like roaches, ants, and plenty more. Be sure you know what sorts of techniques you are employing to keep your restaurant clean.
Know What Kinds of Pest Problems You Have
Every building has pest problems. Even brand-new facilities will find themselves dealing with pest issues right away. This is entirely normal, and that means you need to be aware of what sorts of issues you must deal with. Knowing what kinds of problems are common will allow you to better explain your approach to pest control and give your inspector confidence that things are under control. If an inspector doesn’t have the confidence that you have your pest problem properly managed, there’s a strong chance you may see a lower health score, barring a restaurant that is otherwise absolutely spotless.
Run a Mock Inspection Using Real Documents
Did you know that most health inspection documents and forms are available online? These are publicly available information, which means you have access to everything you need. We recommend printing these documents off and then assuming the role of your health inspector to run a mock inspection before they arrive. Go through the list and check everything for yourself. If you see something that is lacking, address it now before the inspection time comes. It may be a time-consuming task, but it will be worth every minute of your effort if it saves you from missing a serious problem that would otherwise cause you to fail.
Know How Pest Issues Are Scored
Not all pest issues are created equal, and knowing what issues are more serious than others could help you continue to pass without issues. For example, the presence of certain species of flies in your kitchen may not necessarily be that big of a deal as they aren’t known for carrying serious illnesses or other issues. The presence of rodents or rodent droppings, on the other hand, is an extremely serious issue that can cause immediate and automatic failure. Knowing what issues are more serious than others could help you avoid a costly mistake by accidentally overlooking a bigger issue while focusing on the small stuff.
Always Assume a Surprise Inspection
Restaurants are required to have scheduled inspections, but they are also subject to surprise, unscheduled inspections as well. This is to ensure restaurants are doing their required duties in terms of protecting your health and following procedures at all times. These surprise inspections are often some of the most stressful purely because you didn’t have time to prepare for them whatsoever.
The best way to ensure these surprise checks go over smoothly is to always assume one will happen the following day. Make sure your staff is always following cleaning and sanitizing procedures to the letter at all times. Make sure your pest management methods are all up to date and current. Make sure everything is clean, your food is kept at safe temperatures, and that you are free from any potential hazards or other violations.Looking for a reliable pest control team that can help you keep your restaurant safe and sanitary? Call Halt Pest Control at (503) 822-6555 today to request an initial appointment!