Please follow local guidelines about physical distancing and staying home during COVID-19
Here at Platers, there are three different ways to share your food:
- By cooking in the kitchen at your home
- By running a catering/cooking business out of your home or licensed kitchen
- By cooking in your locally owned restaurants kitchen
The main difference is the first way requires no business license or permits, however, it does come with a few limitations. It is important to the Platers community to follow all food and safety regulations so first, we will talk about those limitations, then, about some general requirements for all cooks and bakers, including how to label and safe food handling guidelines.
All Applicants must subscribe to receive Platers’ food safety education and training.
Cooking in your home kitchen
By choosing this option to share food, you can get started right away cooking the meals you already love. Along with the general training we provide below, this next section is specific for cooks who operate out of their home kitchen without a permit or business license.
Under Alberta’s regulations, Albertans can sell low risk home prepared foods without requiring a permit, commercial kitchen, or routine inspection. To comply, the cook must…
- Only cook and share low risk foods- Low risk foods are defined as foods that present a low risk of foodborne illness and do not require refrigeration. As such, cooking and sharing meat, poultry, seafood, raw milk, and home bottled water is not allowed
- All ingredients used must be obtained from sources subject to inspection- Meaning you can not use someone else’s home prepared food as an ingredient in your dish, it must come from a store (expectation is fruits and vegetables, which do not require inspections)
- Comply with the general training and labeling guidelines sections (see below)
*Inspections can and may still take place as a follow up to a food safety concern or complaint. To reduce the probability of a home inspection, ensure you are complying with the general training we provide and by visiting the Alberta website below.
Safe Food Handling Guidelines
Any food made available to the public, whether cooking at home or in a restaurant, must be safe to eat. By following the steps of the four sections below, cooks and customers can ensure food is properly prepared and stored.
How to Label
Home prepared foods must have a label to comply with regulations as well as, to help customers remember who they ordered from. The label must be eligible, if handwritten, but can also be typed on a tag, sticker, or card as long as it is delivered to the customer at the same time as the food.
A proper label must include the following statements…
- Prepared in a home kitchen that is not subject to inspection (if sharing food in your home kitchen without a license or permit)
- Not for resale
- Name of food and origin of food (if applicable)
- Date prepared and storage instructions
- Name or business name and contact details (number or email)
Protecting Food From Contamination
First, it is important to use quality ingredients that are not spoiled. Below are the steps to prevent contamination.
- Keep ingredients that require refrigeration cold
- Keep food and ingredients covered while stored and packaged during transportation
- Keep raw ingredients and already prepared food separate
- Water used to prepare food must be safe to drink- If your home has a private water system, visit Alberta Health Services for information if you are unsure or to have your water tested
- Do not sell if it becomes spoiled or contaminated
- Use containers, utensils, and equipment designed to be used with food
Setting up Your Own Kitchen for Safe Food Handling
Since you have the possibility to cook using your kitchen at home, it is important to keep the kitchen and storage areas clean and in good repair. If selecting the option to complete your own deliveries, the vehicle used must also be kept in a clean state.
- All surfaces in contact with food should be smooth and non absorbent for easy cleaning and sanitizing
- Wash, rinse, and sanitize surfaces and utensils before and after each use
- Cover all food containers and garbage to prevent bugs or pests
Food Handler Hygiene
Here at Platers, we value the safety and well being of both the cooks and customers. These hygiene guidelines will protect the cook and ensure customers can trust that the food they eat is safe.
- Keep small children, ill family members, and pets out of the kitchen while preparing food
- Don’t prepare food if you are ill
- Wash hands with soap and hot water, lathering for 20 seconds, before handling food and after taking a break, snacking, smoking, handling raw ingredients or other food, or using the washroom
- Wear clean clothes and cover and/or tie hair back
- Don’t smoke or eat while preparing food
This training is not exhaustive, especially on the topic of food safely. It is the cook or bakers responsibility to fully understand and operate under government regulations. For more details, please see the Alberta Health Services Guidelines for selling home cooked food.