Some foods need particular care when preparing them, as when handled improperly they are very suitable for food poisoning bacteria to grow in. If you are planning to serve any of these foods, your written Food Safety Management System will need to detail your preparation methods and how you are controlling the risk adequately – failure to do so may affect your Food Hygiene Rating and could result in enforcement action being taken against you.

Listed below are some foods which require this extra care:

‘Sous Vide’ cooking

Cooking foods ‘Sous Vide’ involves sealing the food in a plastic pouch using a vacuum sealer machine, then cooking it at a temperature lower than normal to improve the quality of the final product. The lower temperatures and oxygen-free environment this method uses are ideal for some food poisoning bacteria to grow, meaning extra caution has to be exercised when preparing food in this way. For guidance on this process, please see this leaflet produced by Allerdale Council.


Burgers cooked less than well done

If you plan to serve burgers rare or to any standard less than well done, you should discuss this with us beforehand.

Burgers that are purposefully left slightly raw after cooking can present a major risk to health if improperly managed, as bacteria such as E.coli O157 may survive the cooking process and cause significant harm. The Food Standards Agency has published an extensive guidance document on this topic, and the steps that a food business must take to effectively manage the risks.

In March 2017, the Food Standards Agency introduced a requirement that any supplier that intends to supply minced meat or meat products intended to be eaten less than well-cooked must be approved by their local authority or the Food Standards Agency. Linked here is the current list of approved suppliers that you must use if you intend to carry out this process.


Rice needs to be cooked and stored safely. When cooling and reheating rice, care needs to be taken that the rice is cooled quickly before storing in the fridge and when reheating, it needs to be thoroughly reheated so that it is piping hot all the way through. The Food Standards Agency has produced a safe methods sheet for their Safer Food Better Business pack which details how to cook rice safely.


Chicken liver pate

Freshly prepared chicken liver pate has the potential to cause food poisoning if it is not prepared and cooked properly. The Food Standards Agency provides a safe method  which should be followed to ensure the product is safe.

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