When you use food machinery regularly and you want to ensure that the food you are preparing is as safe as it possibly can be, you need to clean that machinery properly. There are some cleaning products that are better than others – and, more importantly, safer than others – but the range can be confusing. Here is a guide on what you can use to clean specific items of food machinery within your kitchen.
Sanitisers are an essential part of cleaning any type of kitchen equipment and food machinery. Sanitisers kill bacteria, which means that your kitchen should be germ-free once you are done using them. There are a variety of different types of sanitisers including:
In many cases you will need to purchase cleaning products that include these ingredients as well as others, so it is wise to read the instructions that come with your food machinery to check that whatever you are using is going to clean your equipment and not damage it in any way.
Detergents are used to remove dirt. They work by loosening the dirt and grime, making it much easier to wash off. Washing up liquid is a detergent, for example – in fact, any time you see bubbles and suds when you are using a cleaning product, you will know it has detergent in it.
Most of the time, you will need to use warm water with the detergent to ensure that it does its job properly.
Abrasives are, as the name implies, abrasive. This means that when they are used as cleaning products, they will create friction, and rub away the dirt that has built up on any food equipment you might be using. Abrasives are tools more than a cleaning product, but they can be used in conjunction with detergents and sanitisers – examples include sponges with a rough side, wire wool, or pot scourers. There are also abrasive powders.
You should never use abrasives on any polished surfaces like stainless steel as they will scratch them and take away the shine.
Great care must be taken when using any kind of acid for kitchen machinery cleaning purposes. They are ideal for removing rust and hard water stains, but they will also polish copper and brass.
If you don’t like the idea of using dangerous acids, even in diluted form as they would be for kitchen cleaning purposes, you can use natural products such as lemon juice and vinegar.
Bleach can be a great way to clean a kitchen and the food machinery within it, but they need to be used with caution as they will discolour fabric if you are not careful.
Another important point when using bleach is that it must never be combined with ammonia based cleaners. If this happens, chlorine gas will be produced and that is toxic, and can even be deadly.
Some alkalis can completely remove the need for scrubbing, meaning they can be useful when it comes to cleaning stainless steel and other pieces of equipment that can be easily scratched and damaged.