f. When cooling foods, food service personnel should use shallow containers
with a depth no greater than 3 inches. The container should expose a large surface
area of the food product. Cutting food into small pieces and stirring the food will also
promote rapid cooling.
g. Food service personnel should not overburden refrigeration units with an
excessive quantity of hot foods to be cooled.
h. Food service personnel should never allow hot foods to cool at room
i. Likewise, frozen foods must not be thawed at room temperatures. Frozen
foods should be thawed in a refrigeration unit, in a conventional or microwave oven,
under potable running water, or during cooking.
j. The temperature of a refrigeration unit does not give an accurate indication of
the temperature of the food products that it contains. Due to this, the food products in
the refrigeration unit must actually be checked with a food thermometer. Likewise, food
products on the serving line must be checked with a thermometer. A thermometer
placed in a food item is the only way to determine if the temperature is safe.
k. Cross-contamination occurs when foods are contaminated by contact with
other contaminated food items, personnel, utensils, equipment, and surfaces. It can
occur in all phases of food handling and processing, but frequently intensifies problems
arising from inadequate temperature control during food preparation.
(1) Cleaning and sanitizing equipment, utensils, and surfaces.
(2) Requiring employees to wash their hands.
(3) Covering foods.
m. It is your job as an inspector to determine that Army food service personnel
follow the procedures designed to establish adequate temperature control and to