Cleaning, waste management and pest control

Keep food premises clean and safe

Clean premises will reduce the risk of contamination, avoid pest infestations, and provide a safe and pleasant working environment.


Follow these simple guidelines:

  • adopt 'a clean as you go' policy when you produce waste and mess
  • use one cleaning chemical supplier and ask for a demonstration
  • use a cleaning schedule explaining what will be cleaned and when, what chemical will be used and when work will be checked
  • keep all chemicals locked away, and away from food
  • do not pour cleaning chemicals into unmarked containers
  • read chemical safety and user instructions before use
  • empty and clean buckets after use
  • hang brushes and mops off the floor after use, away from food rooms
  • provide suitable dustbins with lids
  • clean refuse areas regularly 
  • arrange a trade waste agreement with the local authority or reputable waste removal company
  • employ a cleaning contractor to carry out a deep clean every six months
  • do not use cleaning chemical containers for food storage
  • use a detergent to remove grease, and a disinfectant to kill bacteria


Disposal of Controlled Waste 

Under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, section 34 you have a duty of care to ensure any waste you produce is handled safely and within the law.
Any waste from commercial premises is classified as controlled waste. You must be able to provide evidence of your:

  • trade waste contract
  • waste carrier licences
  • waste transfer notes for controlled waste including waste oil

Fats, oils and grease

Fats, oils and grease (FOG) are generated during the preparation, cooking and cleaning up after the preparation of food. If FOG and leftover food go down your pipes, they will become solid and block your drains.

It is important that everyone working for you knows the best way to manage your kitchen’s waste.  Training employees and helping them understand the need for grease management and good kitchen practice can help to prevent blockages in your business’s pipes.


Our best advice

  • Scrape any leftover food into the bin and wipe pots, pans and utensils with paper towels before washing up

  • Use sink strainers in plug holes

  • Install a Grease Removal Unit or Grease Separator as a form of grease management to prevent FOG reaching your waste pipes

  • Clean and maintain any grease management equipment regularly

  • Collect leftover FOG in an airtight container and arrange for it to be collected by a licensed waste contractor

  • Properly protect the oil storage area from leaks and spillages, and keep a suitable distance from drains, to avoid leakages into the drains 

  • Keep a record of grease management maintenance and used cooking oil collection dates


What the law says


Keeping fats, oils and grease out of drains is always the most effective solution to keep your pipes clear of blockages. Discharging these substances is illegal and you could face fines or prosecution, under Section 111 of The Water Industry Act 1991, if you damage sewers.

More detailed advice can be found on the Thames Water website.


Pest control

70 per cent of good pest control is good housekeeping, 25 per cent is good repair of buildings and the remaining 5 per cent is the use of pesticides. 

  • common pest are rats, mice, cockroaches, flies and birds 
  • pests carry disease and can damage food and property 
  • infestations in food rooms are against the law 
  • employ a reputable pest control company belonging to the British Pest Control Association
  • no food handler should use pesticides
  • report sightings or signs of pests to management immediately
  • repair any holes or damage to the building before you use chemical treatment
  • keep lids on bins
  • ultra-violet fly traps will not work unless switched on and serviced regularly
  • keep food at least 150 mm off the floor in store rooms
  • throw out food damaged by pests 
  • regularly inspect all stock and storerooms 
  • keep doors and windows shut 
  • keep pets out of kitchens 
  • do not use fly sprays in food rooms

Last updated: 19 February 2021