Keeping supermarkets and grocery stores hygienically clean is no easy task, and it is much more all encompassing than the proverbial “clean up on aisle 7.”
Supermarkets and grocery stores require constant surveillance, as they literally are havens for many types of bacteria that cause serious health issues.
All of this underscores the ongoing need for professional hygiene cleaning services to keep impressions up, bacteria down and your employees and customers happy.
Who Is Enviro-Master Service Of Pittsburgh?
In the Pittsburgh area, we are known to be the leading provider of commercial restroom hygiene sanitation and related services.
We continually assume the responsibility of doing everything possible for managers and owners of all types of businesses to avoid the spread of harmful pathogens.
We offer the most thorough commercial tile cleaning surfaces, and we are partnered with Air Scent International, which adds to our list of services, superior environmental odor control control and air-freshening solutions.
Our products are 100 percent sustainable and we have been serving the Pittsburgh area and its surrounding environs for more than four decades.
In the words of CEO, Arnold Zlotnik: “Enviro-Master brings outstanding products with service innovations and a reputation for excellence that our customers appreciate. We are now able to meet a greater range of needs within our customer base and we can branch out within our community and the tri-state area with a full complement of hygiene services solutions. We are dedicated to providing effective restroom hygiene for all commercial spaces, large or small.”
Hygiene Issues For Supermarkets and Grocery Stores
It is the element of constant traffic in supermarkets that makes it so difficult and vital to keep things clean.
According to Colleen Costello, co-founder and CEO of Vital Vio, a company that produces chemical-free LED lighting to kill bacteria: “Supermarkets are filled with a diverse community of people, who are bringing different bacteria from their homes, workplaces, cars, and more. These people are gathered around an area full of food—and not only touching this food, but also the carts, shelves, and self-checkouts.”
The job is all encompassing, as the food supply chain of every item sold in any supermarket or grocery store as it travels from producer to consumer must be carefully noted and recorded.
This is because it can be a perilous journey fraught with many issues that can impact human health and this also includes the hygienic care taken within the store once it arrives.
The problem is compounded by the multitude of ways food is presented, which collectively present many opportunities in which consumer safety can be seriously compromised.
Frozen foods, cooked products, bottled products, dairy items, raw meats, seafood, packaged, peeled, chopped, bagged and even loose vegetables all require vigilance and strict adherence to safety standards.
A Few Specific Bathroom Hygiene Issues
Supermarket bathrooms are different and they require specific care and expertise to properly maintain such as that provided by Enviro Pitt.
These bathrooms can be full of pathogens.
For the health and safety of both employees and customers, they must always be in good working order, and all staff members must wash their hands before returning to work, especially those who handle food preparation in areas such as: fish counters, butcher shops, bakery and deli sections.
Good working order also means that bathrooms must provide a secure, barrier to communicable diseases, as about 80 percent of them are spread by touch alone.
Supermarket customers pick through vegetables and fruits and there is no way to avoid the fact that some unwanted pathogens will be left behind.
Supermarket management must combat this by providing ways to keep hands clean with Enviro-Pit solutions.
A Few Relevant Studies And Statistics
Reusethisbag.com, an online retailer for reusable shopping bags, conducted a study in 2017 in conjunction with EMLab P&K in Ohio, in which they examined the bacteria levels at more than 100 grocery stores of varying sizes and price levels in 10 states across America.
Results were shocking, and indicated that large quantities of germs were found on almost all surfaces at both upscale and budget and large and small grocery stores.
The study concluded that the most harmful bacteria count was found on shopping carts and that supermarkets in New York, California, Texas, Florida and Maine had the highest germ count in the produce aisle.
Seventy-five percent of the grocery cart swabs tested positive for pathogens known as “gram-negative rods,” which are very harmful to humans in 90% of cases.
Other appalling findings included the fact that upscale grocery store produce had 11 times more bacteria than the bottom of the average dog’s food bowl and that budget grocery store shopping carts retained 270 times more bacteria than a toilet handle. (The cart had 8,112 bacteria colonies per square inch, while the count on a toilet handle is 30 bacteria colonies per square inch.)
Produce found at upscale grocery stores tested positive for 30 times the amount of bacteria colonies, possibly due to reduced pesticide usage in organic fruits and vegetables.
The following represent a list of tips provided by the hygiene experts at Enviro-Pit that will help Pittsburgh managers and owners maintain cleanliness in their supermarkets and grocery stores.
Provide Satisfactory Facilities
This is the epitome of good business because both employees and customers will need to use restrooms at some point during their shifts and shopping trips.
While unsettling, it is important to remember that about 80% of communicable diseases are spread by touch, which means that handling vegetables and fruits translates into coming in contact with unwanted pathogens.
It is highly recommended that no-touch appliances, such as Enviro-Master’s paper towel dispensers and air hand dryers ,should be set up in every supermarket or grocery store bathroom.
Monitor Food Security
While the risk of food security infractions is low once foods are inside a store, Enviro Pitt experts warn that there are still steps that supermarkets and grocery store managers must take to ensure safety and security.
Detailed supplier agreements define precise standards as to what is acceptable and what is not.
They also automatically create documentation in case an incident occurs that is caused by a supplier. They sometimes do happen when employees either purposely or accidentally adulterate food.
Managers should offer comprehensive employee food safety training and encourage employees to report violations of food security immediately.
Areas where customers have easy access to fresh and prepared foods should be carefully monitored to ensure no product tampering takes place.
They should also consider the use of security seals, which can help customers identify the freshness and safety of packaged foods.
Provide Hand Sanitizers and Surface Sanitizing Wipes
Hot-spots in a supermarket. could include: reusable bags, cashier PIN pads, check out belts, raw meat, cart child seats, basket and shopping cart handles.
For this reason, it is essential to provide customers with hand sanitizers and sanitizing wipes upon entry so they can get their hands cleaned, sanitize child seats and wipe down the cart handles.
Take Special Care At Checkout Counters And Bagging Areas
The front end of any supermarket-or grocery store is the only location in the store that every shopper visits.
According to a study conducted by DHC Analysis for Front End Focus, customers spend an average of five to seven minutes in line, handling merchandise and checking out magazines and other items, creating messy display shelves.
Neatness has a direct impact on a supermarket’s bottom line, and the need to keep the front end of a supermarket, as well as the sidewalks outside, clean and free of trash such as cigarette butts, coffee cups and grit can never be overemphasized.
Train Employees In The New Procedures
Educating employees and providing training in the new procedures, especially those concerning food handling and safety will help supermarkets and grocery stores function smoothly and present a clean, safe and organized image to customers, which is vital to consumer loyalty and traffic.
We thrive on our mantra that sanitized and hygienic restrooms lead to happier employees, healthier customers and better business returns and operations.
Our job always begins where the cleaning crew leaves off, and our comprehensive hygiene services include: deep washroom fixture cleaning, electrostatic disinfecting fogging applications, heavy duty grout and tile power-cleaning, paper and supplementary restroom hygiene product programs.
For Pittsburgh and western PA supermarkets and grocery stores, our wide array of restroom hygiene services include: tile and grout deep cleaning; restroom cleaning; fruit fly and drain control; soaps and sanitizers; supplemental paper products and professional air-fresheners.
And our services are the most cost-effective in the industry!
So call our teams today and transform your Pittsburgh and Western PA supermarket or grocery store into a sparkling clean and hygienically sound place for both employees and customers!
Photo Credits: Pixabay