AMES, Iowa – As the restaurant industry starts to slowly restart operations after being closed down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Restaurant Association has developed a “COVID-19 Restaurant Opening Guidance” document.
“This document guides foodservice operators by providing a framework of best practices for keeping the workers and customers safe from COVID-19,” said Anirudh Naig, a food safety extension state specialist and associate professor in apparel, events, and hospitality management at Iowa State University
The guide can be downloaded for free from https://go.restaurant.org/covid19-reopening-guide.
The guide has been prepared with latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“Foodservice operators should use this guide along with state and local guidelines,” Naig said.
Human sciences specialists with ISU Extension and Outreach have taught the National Restaurant Association’s ServSafe food safety certification program for more than 25 years as registered instructors for this internationally recognized food safety certification program.
Iowa’s Food Code requires at least one supervisory employee in licensed foodservices be certified in food safety through an approved program, Naig said.
In the past fiscal year, 1,850 foodservice professionals participated in ServSafe education taught by ISU Extension and Outreach, becoming certified food protection managers.
“These individuals are well qualified to implement essential food safety practices in foodservice establishments,” Naig added.