Bleugh – this is the noise that disgusting cafes hear every day. And chances are they deserve it.
You can imagine the caricature of a dodgy cafe. They’re those filthy greasy spoons that Del Boy used to eat in, filled with more sodden oil and bacteria than a nuclear dead zone.
Now, those cafes can’t hope to exist. They’d be shut down before you could throw your bacon butty in the bin.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) breathe down the neck of any eatery, making regular inspections and putting the foot down on cafes who don’t comply with their will. It’s three strikes and you’re out – although if your eatery is too filthy to bear, you could be shut down instantly.
That’s not to mention the consumer perception of your business. Hygiene ratings are now easily accessible online, so you can’t hide your shabby rating under the counter.
With that in mind, we’ve come up with a few ways to turn your grimy cafe into a sparkling and safe place to eat.
Call the pros
Your staff might be pros in your cafe, but can they match the kitchen deep cleaning pros for thoroughness and hygiene?
When you’re spinning the plates of customer service, replenishing stock, making ace cappuccinos, cleaning tables and countless other jobs, it’s doubtless that a more in-depth clean isn’t feasible every day.
But the FSA won’t take that as a reasonable excuse. So call in the pros every once in a while and your vents, grease traps and other hard-to-reach spots will be spick and sparkling.
Keep staff in the loop
Do you have staff who yawn at customers, shrug their shoulders when they spill coffee and treat you with utter contempt? Then it’s time to turf them out – they’re hygiene nightmares waiting to happen.
Staff who can’t be bothered serving properly are unlikely to give two figs if your kitchen counters are dirty. You need a group of employees who’ll clean up of their own accord, stay after closing time to muck in and strive to make your cafe look like it did when you first opened.
This’ll be a trial and error process, but it’ll be worth it when you’ve got employees who know how to keep your cafe shipshape.
Round the clock scrubbing
In your personal life, you probably put off doing the dishes after tea. “It can wait until morning,” you think to yourself, before slinking off to laze in front of the telly.
But think like that in a cafe and you’ll have more bacteria than a junk heap. Make sure you and your staff clean any messes straight away, lest they infect the rest of your cafe.
It might seem like a small tip, but it can make a giant difference.