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Covid 19, guidelines for the rebirth of restaurants and bars through food delivery

Guidelines for food delivery of bars and restaurants at the time of #Covid 19. The Veterinary Service for Hygiene of Foods of Animal Origin and their Derivatives (SVIA) of the USSL 7 Pedemontana offers the technical basis for the revival of restaurants and bars through food delivery.

A procedure logical and simple, which every public exhibiting can adapt to the characteristics of their system, print and apply with care. But also a model to be adapted and applied in every production and service supply context, in that logic of continuity management invoked by the social partners in Italy with the initials of the Protocol 14.3.20. (1)

Remote catering

Remote catering - i.e. home delivery of food - is the only activity actually permitted to public establishments (e.g. bars, taverns, restaurants, fast food), following the DPCM 11.3.20, cd decree #RestiamoaCasa.
However, it is necessary to adapt the self-control procedures, taking into account various aspects:

- unforeseen activities in almost all of the hygienic-sanitary self-control plans of public establishments (packaging and delivery of food),

- transmission risks of the coronavirus among employees and between these and other subjects (suppliers, transporters, deliverymen, customers),

- need to guarantee the delivery of food and dishes virus-free.

Il vade mecum

Il vade mecum (download here) - prepared by Fabrizio De Stefani, Director of the veterinary food hygiene service of the ULSS N. 7 Pedemontana Company - and Andrea Gazzetta, veterinary manager in the same Venetian structure - is part of the context of the self-control procedures that are incumbent on all operators of the agri-food, feed and food supply chain MOCA (Materials and Objects in Contact with Food).

GHP procedures (Good Hygienic Practicese HACCP adopted by each operator - within the aforementioned supply chains as in other sectors, with the specificities of the case (eg GAP, GMP, ISO quality management systems) must in fact be adapted to the specific microbiological risk (SARS-CoV- 2. emerged with the Covid-19 pandemic In line with the requirements established in General Food Law (EC Reg. 178/02) and Hygiene Package (EC Reg. 852/04 and later).

The working method proposed in the vademecum in question - intended for the 'conversion' of collective catering to the new scenario imposed by the coronavirus containment measures - should therefore be followed by the representatives of the various sectors and sectors, in Italy as in any other country. To offer useful guidelines to their associates on how to update self-control plans, taking into account their respective specificities. (2)

Risk analysis and integrated supply chain responsibility

Attention should be dedicated to each activity, with an approach based on:

- risk analysis, according to the HACCP logic,

- integrated supply chain responsibility.

Covid-19 has a potential impact on both product safety (as regards fresh and raw food, in particular) and processes, both on the health of workers and of all those who interact with the organization (premises and people). Namely logistics suppliers and operators (warehousing, transport), visitors and customers.

The responsibility of the operators - in catering, as in other areas of the supply chain - it hinges on compliance with good hygiene practices. However, these must be strengthened, with specific regard to the hygiene precautions and containment measures adopted to deal with the COVID-19 emergency, according to the Decalogue of the Ministry of Health.

Anti-Covid hygiene recommendations

Hygienic recommendations to prevent the transmission of the coronavirus, it is emphasized, they are based primarily on:

- safety distances interpersonal, to be respected always and in any case,

- frequent hand sanitation, with water or alcohol-based solutions / gels. (4) Absolutely avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth unless immediately after having sanitized your hands. Always cover your nose and mouth with disposable tissues or the crook of your elbow when sneezing or coughing,

- sanitation frequent of surfaces, tools and work items, mobile phones and other devices.

Anyone must avoid going out and going to work in case of flu symptoms or contact (or cohabitation) with people positive to COVID-19. #RestiamoaCasa, whenever the risk of spreading the infection (!) Can be foreseen.

Specific workplace recommendations

Work environments and tools they must be disinfected, ventilated and sanitized at the beginning and at the end of each shift. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE, eg. masks, gloves) and prudential behavior must also be adopted to prevent physical contact of the virus with objects, food, surfaces and other people.

Personnel management, must follow the following essential criteria:

- training and awareness the dutiful compliance with hygienic precautions, including through information signs on the most frequented workplaces,

- provision of suitable PPE, Which masks and gloves, overalls / gowns / disposable aprons, over-shoes. (5) With particular attention where it is not possible to continuously guarantee an adequate distance between workers, which remains essential to minimize any contacts along the production line, (2)

- reduce the number of employees present at the same time in the plant, modifying the shifts and avoiding close interpersonal contacts in changing rooms and refreshment rooms,

- incentivize the use of disposable crockery and cutlery in canteens, favoring pre-packaged portions, (6)

- prepare the use of the company fleet in safe conditions, for any trips.

Access to the premises it must be as limited as possible and in any case contingent upon. And so:

- avoid as much as possible the entry of visitors, suppliers, customers, etc. Or at least

- establish time slots for the access of external suppliers. Conditions, information, methods and times, routes (and reserved bathrooms) must be predefined in order to minimize the opportunities for contact with the staff. Workers, visitors, contractors, transporters who have not complied with the containment measures are responsible, even in criminal matters, for their behavior,

- limit drivers from the descent from the means. Where this is not possible, provide them with hand disinfectants and PPE (masks, gloves),

- transmit the transport documentation electronically.

Food management

Managers and those in charge of self-control must strictly follow the hygiene practices set out below:

- cooked / raw. Constant separation of cooked food from raw food (from storage to preparation, up to packaging for delivery),

- temperature food storage, to be respected also in the storage and transport phases,

- tools. Always keep utensils used for raw food, to be disinfected after use, separate from those used after cooking.

NB: coronaviruses are sensitive to high temperatures, being inactivated at 70 ° C. Reaching the core of the product therefore ensures food safety with respect to the related microbiological risk.

Transport e food delivery

Transportation is a critical stage, as it can allow the development of pathogenic and / or altering microorganisms that come from raw materials and / or environmental cross-contamination.

The delivery business of food prepared by restaurateurs, so-called food delivery, in particular, it is the subject of specific recommendations:

- sanitation accurate of the surfaces as well as of the hands,

- separation of premises intended for the withdrawal of food from those used in its preparation,

- use of special containers o disposable bags for storing food intended for consumption at home with closing stickers, staples or other,

- use of thermal backpacks or transport containers.

food delivery, labeling

A labeling model adhesive - to be affixed on the plate packaging or on a summary label on the outside of the bag and / or the polybox dedicated to food delivery - is another pearl of wisdom offered in the Guidelines in question. With the aim of providing the consumer with essential information:

- manufacturer name and telephone contact,

- recipient,

- list of number and type of products, with reference to the maximum storage temperatures in the transport and storage phases. (9)

Allergens present in every dish, we add, they must also be specified on the basis of the provisions of regulation (EU) 1169/11.

The client he must then be informed of the need to receive the delivery clerk wearing a protective mask (and gloves, if possible), keeping a safety distance of not less than one meter. Better yet, without opening the door, collect the package left on the landing after the delivery man has left. To this end, electronic payment is encouraged.

Precautions in places open to the public

The measures of lockdown, please note, they are not extended to food and beverage outlets in service areas located on the edge of road and motorway networks (eg Autogrill), as well as in stations (railway, airport, lake) and hospitals. These exercises must therefore in turn adopt appropriate measures to prevent the infection. In particular:

- limit as much as possible the number of interpersonal contacts by limiting access and respecting safety distances (even between diners). This involves the necessary distancing of the tables and the administration of meals without self-service, preferring single portions,

- ensure compliance with hygiene measures, making hand disinfectant solutions available to customers. In addition to frequently disinfecting tables, chairs, counters, handles and toilets and other surfaces.

Privacy, personal and sensitive data

The employer, before entering the workplace, can subject staff to body temperature control. And also to adopt a ban on access to anyone who has a temperature equal to or higher than 37,5 ° C. (7)

In the presence of fever (> 37.5 ° C) or other flu symptoms, the worker is in turn obliged to remain at home and to call the family doctor and the health authority.

The Guarantor for the protection of personal data has clarified in this regard that:

- the employers they must refrain from collecting a priori and in a systematic and generalized way the news on any flu symptoms of the worker and his closest contacts (or which in any case are outside the working sphere,

- workers however, they have the duty to report any situation of danger to health and safety in the workplace to the employer. (8)

Dario Dongo and Giulia Caddeo


(1) Coronavirus, containment measures in the workplace. Protocol 14.3.20https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/sicurezza/coronavirus-misure-di-contenimento-negli-ambienti-di-lavoro-protocollo-14-3-20

Responsibility of employers on the health of workers, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/sicurezza/coronavirus-misure-di-contenimento-negli-ambienti-di-lavoro-protocollo-14-3-20

(2) See eg. scheme Covid-19 containment protocol, Confindustria Vicenza, Confindustria: Facsimile corporate protocol to combat and contain the spread of Covid-19

(2) Confindustria: Privacy Information Model - Treatments Anti-contagion protocol

(3) Responsibility for food sector operators, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/salute/sicurezza-alimentare-abc-responsabilità-operatori

ABC restaurant hygienehttps://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/idee/igiene-nei-ristoranti-l-abc

(4) Hands must be washed before and after each phase of food preparation and handling (as well as after cleaning and waste management). Gloves must be changed after using the toilet, blowing the nose (or sneezing or coughing. But also after eating, drinking or smoking, handling cash. Controls at the entrance of outsiders and transporters.

(5) NB: the use of a surgical mask certified UNI EN 14683: 2019 (Facial masks for medical use - Requirements and test methods) offers the presumption of conformity with the general safety and performance requirements for kitchen or food handling personnel (Directive 93/42 / EEC, Annex. Regulation (EU) 2017/745)

(6) preferably obtained with compostable materials derived from hemp, paper and cardboard

(7) Shared protocol for regulating measures to combat and contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus in the workplace;


(8) Product type A: Cold finished products delivered in cold bond (T ° <+ 4 ° C) to be consumed as they are

Product type B: Products cooked, blast chilled and delivered in a cold link to be consumed after cooking and / or thermal regeneration

Product type C: Cooked finished products delivered in hot bond (T °> + 60 ° C) to be consumed immediately.

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Dario Dongo, lawyer and journalist, PhD in international food law, founder of WIISE (FARE - GIFT - Food Times) and Égalité.

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Graduated in law, master in Food, Law & Finance. You have explored the theme of green procurement and urban food policies in the International Cooperation and Peace sector of the City of Turin.

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