We recommend all operators review their sanitation procedures and increase their sanitation frequency, especially for high touch surfaces and public areas.
Surfaces must be cleaned on a regular basis with an approved detergent. Cleaning removes physical contaminants or dirt on the surface. This is followed by rinsing with clean, potable water. Cleaned surfaces must then be sanitized (food contact surfaces) or disinfected (non food contact surfaces). Review with your staff how to use and verify the concentration of sanitizers and disinfectants used in your food premises.
Disinfectants and Sanitizers: how they are different
Disinfectants are different from sanitizers in that they have a greater ability to destroy bacteria, viruses and molds. Disinfectants are used at a higher concentration and require a longer contact time than sanitizers. If a food grade disinfectant is used on a food contact surface, it may need to be rinsed off with potable water.
Caution: Operators must confirm that sanitizers or disinfectants are appropriate for use against COVID-19 and for food premises use with their chemical suppliers. Some disinfectants can be toxic and are unsuitable for food premises or food contact surfaces. Approved disinfectants:
Canadian Drug and Health Products list of registered Sanitizers and Disinfectants.
Disinfectants for Use Against SARS-CoV-2 | US EPA (List N)
In Canada, disinfectants must have a DIN (drug identification number). Some disinfectant/sanitizer products are the same chemical. It can be used as a disinfectant when used at a higher concentration and longer contact time or as a sanitizer when used at a lower concentration and shorter contact time. For example, “bleach” is considered a disinfectant when used at 1000 to 5000 ppm with a 10 minute contact time, but is considered a sanitizer when used at 100 to 200 ppm with a 2 minute contact time. To prepare a bleach solution consult the
FOODSAFE online bleach calculator.
Food grade sanitizers are used after cleaning to reduce the level of bacteria to a safe level when following the manufacturer’s instruction for concentration and contact time. Sanitizers are used on food contact surfaces. When sanitizers are used at the no-rinse concentration level it does not need to be rinsed off with clean potable water.