Food Safety Inspection Check List

Would you like to have an A#1 kitchen in your home. Use this inspection checklist that is used to inspect child care facilities in Nebraska to see how your home shapes up.

Conduct a self-inspection of your food preparation skills by answering the following questions. Concentrate on one section at a time. Choose a time when food preparation is in progress. While not all questions will apply to your home, most questions will. For people with children there are some very good questions to consider.

Check either "yes" or "no." Questions receiving a "no"answer indicate an area that you need to change.

Personal hygiene

___Yes ___No Are food handlers well groomed (clean clothing, restrained hair, and clean hands, including fingernails)?
___Yes ___No Do food handlers wash their hands frequently (after using the bathroom, after coughing or sneezing, and after handling raw foods, dirty dishes, or garbage)?
___Yes ___No Do you and your staff following proper hand-washing procedures?
___Yes ___No Are food handlers' hands free from cuts and sores?
___Yes ___No Do food handlers wear plastic gloves or other waterproof protection if cuts and sores are present?
___Yes ___No Are you and your staff generally in good health?

Purchasing, receiving, and inspecting food

___Yes ___No Do you buy foods from reliable suppliers?
___Yes ___No Do the foods you buy meet your child care center's standards?
___Yes ___No Does someone check the food for adequate frozen (0°) or refrigerated temperatures (40°F) damage or insect infestation, expiration dates, and other quality indicators, before accepting them?
___Yes ___No Is the food receiving area clean?

Food storage

___Yes ___No Do you store raw foods separately from cooked foods?
___Yes ___No Are the food storage areas clean?
___Yes ___No Is the dry food storage area dry and between 40° and 70°F?
___Yes ___No Do you store foods to ensure a first-in, first-out use? Do you label food packages and containers to indicate contents and date of storage?
___Yes ___No Do you maintain the refrigerator at or below 40° F and the freezer at 0° F?
___Yes ___No Do you have an accurate thermometer in the refrigerator and freezer?

Food service equipment

___Yes ___No Is the equipment in good working condition?
___Yes ___No Are food handlers following proper procedures for operating the equipment?
___Yes ___No Do you and staff members properly clean and sanitize equipment after each use?
___Yes ___No Do staff members follow proper dish washing (manual or automatic) procedures?
___Yes ___No Are food handlers properly cleaning and sanitizing cutting boards and food contact work surfaces after each use?

Food preparation

___Yes ___No Do you thaw frozen foods in a microwave, under refrigeration, or under cold running water? Do you cook foods directly in the frozen state?
___Yes ___No During food preparation, are food handlers keeping food in the danger zone (40° to 140°F) for less than 2 hours?
___Yes ___No Do you cook food items to the proper internal temperatures (180°F for chicken, 160°F for pork, and 160°F for ground beef and meat loaf)?
___Yes ___No Do you use a thermometer to check the temperature of a cooked product or refrigerated food?
___Yes ___No Do you keep and serve hot foods at 140°F or above and cold foods at 40°F or below?
___Yes ___No Do you store hot foods in shallow containers and refrigerate immediately?
___Yes ___No Do you wash raw fruits and vegetables thoroughly before serving?
___Yes ___No Is there minimal handling of foods during preparation?
___Yes ___No Do food handlers taste food during preparation in a sanitary manner? Do they use a separate utensil?
___Yes ___No Do you reheat leftovers to 165°F and serve immediately?

Infant food preparation

___Yes ___No Do you use proper sanitizing procedures for infant bottles?
___Yes ___No Do you properly sanitize the equipment you use to prepare infant formulas?
___Yes ___No Do you check the expiration dates on the products before use?
___Yes ___No Do you use safe water for infant formula preparation?
___Yes ___No After preparing formulas, do you label bottles with the children's names and the date?
___Yes ___No Do you cover the formula and refrigerate it after preparation?
___Yes ___No Do you use formulas made from powdered formula within 24 hours?
___Yes ___No Do you use formulas made from concentrated liquid formula within 48 hours?
___Yes ___No Do you discard the partially consumed milk or formula remaining in the bottle?
___Yes ___No Do you remove baby food from jars with a clean spoon and serve it in dishes to infants? (If food remains in the jar, tightly close, date, and store it in the refrigerator. Use opened containers within 72 hours.)
___Yes ___No Do you warm food just before eating? Does food remain in the danger zone (40° to 140°F) for less than 2 hours?
___Yes ___No Do you dispose of the uneaten food on plates?

Serving foods

___Yes ___No Do children wash their hands before and after eating?
___Yes ___No Do you clean and sanitize tables, chairs, and high chairs?
___Yes ___No Do food handlers use utensils instead of hands to serve food?
___Yes ___No Do food handlers wear plastic gloves while serving food?
___Yes ___No Do you place silverware on the tables in a way to prevent contamination?
___Yes ___No Are replacements available if children drop their silverware on the floor?
___Yes ___No Do you use separate cloths and sponges for the children, table spills, and floor spills?


___Yes ___No Are the kitchen and eating areas clean?
___Yes ___No Is the garbage kept covered and located away from food preparation, food storage, and the children's play area?
___Yes ___No Do you keep the restrooms clean and supplied with liquid soap and single-use towels or forced-air blowers?
___Yes ___No Do you empty wastebaskets regularly?
___Yes ___No Is the diapering area away from the food preparation area?
___Yes ___No Do you sanitize and keep the diapering area clean?
___Yes ___No Do you discard soiled diapers promptly?
___Yes ___No Do you keep live animals away from food preparation and serving areas?

Source:  University of Nebraska, Cooperative Extension Institute for Agriculture and Natural Resources