Our Commitment to Our Customers
Food safety and the well-being of our guests are Dining Services’ highest priorities. We approach this commitment to our customers in several ways:
Our department operates under seven guiding principles, including our first principle which is “sanitation and safety are paramount.” As a result, all campus dining centers operate under a comprehensive food safety plan created to prevent foodborne illnesses.
Dining Services follows a Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) program at all of its kitchens and dining centers. HACCP is an internationally-recognized system for reducing safety hazards in food by tracking each ingredient from delivery through preparation, cooking, and serving. Dining Services worked extensively with the Virginia Cooperative Extension's food safety specialist and the Montgomery County Health Department while implementing this program on campus.
As part of our commitment to preventing foodborne illness, Dining Services invests in training for our staff. All new employees are required to complete our in-house training program, Food Safety 100. In addition, management staff must complete ServSafe®, a food-handling program from the National Restaurant Association. Currently, we have over 230 employees certified in this program.
Maintaining Sanitary Facilities
Our commitment to food safety and sanitation is integrated into everything we do at Dining Services. We work very closely with the Montgomery County Health Department to monitor sanitation in our kitchens and dining centers. In addition, we contract with Steritech®, an independent company that conducts semiannual, unannounced inspections. After each inspection, action plans are created to address any issues identified with designated corrective measures, including increased staff training. These plans are typically written within 24 hours of the inspection and reviewed by the local health department.