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Keep Employees and Customers Safe with a Bakery Checklist

A bakery checklist is an indispensable tool for making sure customers and employees of your bakery business are not exposed to any physical, chemical and biological hazards.

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What Is a Bakery Checklist?

A bakery checklist is necessary for successfully running a bakery business. It is your responsibility as an employer to make sure your employees are not exposed to hazards and that they are in a safe working environment.

The bakery safety checklist must cover the steps you need to take to ensure the security and safety of your employees, your customers, and anyone who gets in contact with your establishment.

There are numerous risks that bakers are exposed to in the performance of their job. The International Labor Organization in their International Hazard Datasheets on Occupation lists the following dangers about a baker's job:

  • Bakers may suffer from allergies (mainly of the respiratory system and of the skin) caused by substances used in their work.
  • Bakers work with hot equipment and sharp tools, which may cause such accidents as burns, cuts, etc.
  • Bakers often handle heavy loads (e.g., flour bags). This may cause back pains and trauma.
  • Bakers work in the heat and, sometimes, at night or other irregular hours. This may cause fatigue, overexertion, and other harmful effects.

Having a bakery checklist can help you:

  • Create and maintain a safe workplace
  • Prevent illness, injury, illness, pain and suffering of your employees
  • Improve efficiency and productivity of employees and overall business performance
  • Lower premiums because of fewer workers’ compensation claims
  • Faster and easier return to work for employees who get hurt or experience injury
  • Less disruption of work and fewer absences
  • Reduce employee turnover

This article covers the following topics:

1. How to create a bakery safety checklist

2. How to properly assess manual handling risks

3. What control measures are

4. How modern technology helps with bakery inspection

Woman slicing cake

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How Modern Technology Helps You With Bakery Checklist?

Safety is an important aspect of running a successful bakery. You can incur huge fines and suffer a lot of losses if you ignore the rules of bakery safety.

First and foremost, you must perform a risk management process that involves these three steps:

  1. Hazard identification
  2. Risk assessment
  3. Risk control

After identifying the hazards present in your bakery, you must perform a risk assessment. The third and final step in the risk management process is implementing control measures to minimize the risks of accidents. But it is highly recommended that you also monitor and review the control measures to make sure they are working.

The next step in your bakery safety checklist is to check for risks linked to manual handling. Injuries related to manual handling are responsible for more than half of the total time lost due to injury in the baking industry. Most of these injuries happen during tasks that require lifting, handling, or reaching. These activities are the most common causes of sprains and strains.

How to Properly Assess Manual Handling Risks?

There are three steps you can take, according to The Commission for Occupational Safety and Health's Code for Manual Tasks, in controlling the risks associated with manual handling:

1. Step: Identify all risks by evaluating your team’s

  • Actions or postures
  • Work load
  • Work environment and layout
  • Work organization
  • Skills and experience

2. Step: Assess the risks resulting from the identified risks

Having a Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) plan for your bakery is necessary for ensuring that your business is compliant with food safety law. The plan is a document that is made out of a HACCP study. It defines the strategies needed to ensure proper control of biological, chemical, and physical hazards.

The HACCP plan for bakeries is specific to a baked product. For example, the HACCP plan for a wheat loaf is different from the HACCP plan for cinnamon rolls. There are also specific plans for the different processes involved, such as sanitation and production lines.

3. Step: Control the risks with implimenting a HACCP plan

A HACCP plan aims to control the food safety hazards that the basic hygiene programs and manufacturing best practices can’t prevent. A HACCP plan example bakery must include the seven principles of HACCP for manufacturing baked goods:

  1. Conduct a risk analysis.
  2. Determine the Critical Control Points (CCPs).
  3. Establish critical limit(s).
  4. Establish a system to monitor control of the CCP.
  5. Establish the corrective action to be taken when monitoring indicates that a particular CCP is not under control.
  6. Establish procedures for verification to confirm that the HACCP system is working effectively.
  7. Establish documentation concerning all procedures and records appropriate to these principles and their application.

The first step in creating your HACCP plan is to form a HAACP team. The HACCP team could include the quality manager, the production manager, the maintenance manager, and the technical consultant. The quality manager serves as the HACCP team leader.

Next, provide all necessary information about your product’s formulation, composition, and technologies. Formulation refers to allergenic and plant or animal-derived ingredients. Composition refers to elements that affect microbial growth, such as preservatives, acidity, and nutrition labelling. Technologies can be freezing, vacuuming, pasteurization, fermentation, and other processes used in manufacturing the product.

It is also important to define your target customers for the product and who is going to make them. Intended use is an important part of any bakery checklist because different target groups who will buy, prepare, and/or consume your products have different vulnerabilities. Examples of target groups are children, lactose-intolerant individuals, and hospital patients.

And of course, a HACCP plan won’t be complete without a Process Flow Diagram (PFD). It illustrates the process, its components, and its sequence. It is a flowchart that should include the following:

  • All ingredients and their role in the processing of a product
  • All steps in the manufacturing of a baked product
  • Packaging materials and their specifications
  • Processing, handling, and holding conditions, such as time, temperature, viscosity, and additives
  • Product flow patterns or movement within and between production areas
  • All issues related to hygienic design of bakery equipment

You can consult the OSHA standard 29 CFR 1910.263 for regulations related to bakery equipment.

After doing all of the above, you move on to creating a hazard analysis chart that is necessary for screening potential physical, chemical and biological hazards. It identifies whether a hazard is significant on non-significant. This will make the HACCP easier, simple, and more practical.

In creating a hazard analysis chart, it is important to consider the likelihood of occurrence of an identified hazard and how severe the possible effect is in case the hazard takes place.

What are Control Measures?

Before implementing HACCP, you must already have the prerequisites, such as food hygiene training for all your employees. This is required by law.

It will teach your employees about the basics of food safety, such as safe cooking and storage temperatures, good personal hygiene practices, preventing cross-contamination, proper waste disposal, effective cleaning, and pest prevention, and control.

If you don’t follow the essentials of food hygiene and safety, your HACCP plan will not be effective. It will be impossible for you to control the safety hazards in your bakery.

Furthermore, corrective action procedures must be in place so that your customers are not exposed to contaminated food. Control measures aim to deal with the problem in case the hazard occurs.

Man baking bread

How modern technology helps you with Bakery Checklist?

Paper checklists have their pitfalls: lost documents and unshared information and work instructions can have disastrous consequences for bakery operations. Moving to a digital solution simplifies communication and information sharing. With Lumiform, a mobile app and desktop software for audits and inspections, you can provide clear and concise bakery work instructions while monitoring their execution.

Keep track of bakery inspections by using digital checklists. From now on, perform bakery checks only paperless, and together with your team, benefit from:

  • Start going digital right away using bakery checklists from Lumiform's template library.
  • Convert existing paper-based checklists into digital templates for your team in just a few steps using the innovative form builder.
  • Assign corrective actions instantly from the app to team members, and set priority levels and due dates.
  • Generate reports automatically on the spot and share instantly within the organization.
  • Save reports and store them securely in the cloud.

Bakery counter after bakery audit

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