Cleaning and Sanitizing - Cleaning and Sanitizing5.1
Cleaning and Sanitizing
Cleaning and sanitizing are important steps in all production systems. If done improperly, they can contaminate food.
This Good Agricultural Practice applies to:
What needs to be done
Properly clean and sanitize facilities, equipment, vehicles, washrooms and food contact surfaces where necessary to protect
food from contamination.
How to do it
Identify what needs to be cleaned and sanitized
- Areas (e.g. food handling and storage) and/or equipment (e.g. sorting tables, containers, vehicles, dispensers, fans) that
come into contact with or are associated with the use of pesticides, animal health products or food require some level of
cleaning and sanitizing.
- Cleaning can vary according to the desired outcome (e.g. simple surface sweeping; rinsing with clean water; power washing
with hot water and soap followed by disinfecting, followed by a final clean water rinse; or using a flushing sequence in feed
mixers to remove residues from previous mixes).
Develop written practices
- Generally written practices are developed when:
- Concentrated chemicals are mixed and used;
- Detailed instructions must be given to remove residues from equipment or surfaces;
- Pre-determined frequencies for cleaning and sanitizing must be followed;
- There are unique cleaning situations (e.g. flushing mixers of livestock medicated feeds).
- A practice should:
- Identify who is responsible for cleaning which area or piece of equipment.
- Specify the frequency of cleaning (e.g. daily, weekly or after use only).
- Describe the appropriate tools required to do the job (e.g. gloves, buckets, brushes).
- Specify which product is used for a particular task, and what the contact time should be. If applicable, specify the water
temperature requirements and rinsing steps.
- Describe how to clean and sanitize. Include instructions on how to disassemble and reassemble equipment if necessary.
Choose the right cleaning and sanitizing products
Adapted from: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (www.fao.org)
Use cleaning and sanitizing products properly
- Mix cleaning and/or sanitizing products according to directions on the product label.
- Follow label instructions for use. These may include thorough rinsing with potable water to remove residues.
- Properly label containers for handling, mixing and storing cleaning and sanitizing products. Clean or rinse containers properly
- Train workers to follow proper cleaning and sanitizing practices and identify possible food safety hazards.
- Change cleaning and sanitizing solutions (e.g. in boot wash stations) when necessary. Organic matter in the solution can reduce
- When determining chemical concentrations, take into consideration conditions such as pH, hardness, or the presence of buffers
in your water source. These conditions can affect the amount of chemical required to effectively clean and/or sanitize.
- Evaluate cleaning and sanitizing practices on an on-going basis for effectiveness and adjust if necessary.
Terms used in this good agricultural practice
Cleaning: The removal of dirt, dust, manure and chemical residues from surfaces. This can be as simple as removing manure from a pen,
or a two-step process beginning by removing dirt with soap and water by various methods (e.g. power washer, scrub brush) and
then rinsing with water.
Sanitizing: A process whereby a clean surface is coated with an approved chemical solution/water mix to kill or reduce pathogens.
Records to keep
- Cleaning and sanitizing practices
- Cleaning and Sanitizing Record (record template provided in Support Tools section –
Form #5), or your own record that includes:
- What was cleaned and/or sanitized,
- Products used and their preparation,
- Initials of worker.
If you need an audit
Be prepared for the auditor to:
- Review written cleaning and sanitizing practices and records or verification that only approved products are used;
- Observe your facilities for general cleanliness;
- Observe workers carrying out cleaning and sanitizing procedures.
Laws and regulations that apply
- There are few laws that impact on food safety requiring cleaning and sanitation in agricultural production. Generally, these
requirements are laid out in laws regarding the processing of meat, fish and other food products, which are outside the scope
of this document. Laws which require sanitizing (e.g. for used containers) related to disease management for plants or bees
that are unrelated to food safety are also outside the scope of this document.
- The Milk Industry Standards Regulation, Reg. 464/81, s. 10 (1) under the
Milk Industry Act
requires that cattle shall be clean and the udders shall be washed and dried immediately before milking. Milking equipment
or utensils must be thoroughly cleaned, sanitized and, when not in use, stored free from contamination by dust or other
(s. 35 (2)).
- The Agricultural Produce Grading Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 11, s. 14 (2) (i)
provides that the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations respecting the sanitation of places where a farm product
- Canada Agricultural Products Act,
Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Regulations (C.R.C., c. 285) Part I.1 s. 3.1 (4) (d)
states the produce is handled with equipment that is cleaned regularly.
Calculating ppm solutions from a concentrated liquid For a Large volume of water