Soft serve ice cream first captured imaginations in the 1970s and 80s. This sweet soft confection had a downside, however, as people were sickened by the raw eggs used in creating soft serve. Fortunately, times have changed, as have preparation practices and equipment. At the same time, it is vital for you to keep your soft serve equipment clean.
Cleanliness is Next to Good Customer Service
Even though there is less chance of your customers getting ill from your soft-serve ice cream or yogurt, that one ill customer can create a customer service nightmare, as online review sites have exploded in popularity over the years.
Bacteria love to lurk in the deeper recesses of the soft serve machine, out of easy reach. A thorough cleaning is important. Many manufacturers such as Taylor Soft Serve provide proper cleaning instructions in their manuals. Your yogurt or soft serve ice cream machine must be cleaned at regular intervals and be kept in compliance with state and local health codes.
Using the correct replacement parts is key to keeping your soft serve equipment clean and running properly. Using Taylor ice cream parts in another manufacturer’s machine,for example, is setting the stage for poor operation and difficult maintenance in the future.
Manufacturers such as Taylor offer training videos on their website aimed at teaching shop owners and employees correct maintenance and cleaning techniques. Part of every new employee’s training process should include instruction on how and when to clean the equipment. Using only brand-specific parts such as Taylor ice cream parts for a Taylor machine is vital.
How to Deal With Contaminated Equipment
Despite everyone’s best efforts at cleanliness and hand-washing, mistakes do happen. If a customer reports an illness that has been traced to your soft-serve products, you must comply with all Health Department directives for dismantling and cleaning your equipment, including replacing any faulty parts or fittings.
Complying with all regulations is not only good practice, but good business and ensures your shop is operating according to the highest standards set forth by your state and county health department. Ensuring customer satisfaction in the wake of food-borne illness will help you to maintain goodwill with the affected customer and demonstrate good faith in addressing the operational processes that resulted in a tainted product.
By adhering to a regular cleaning and maintenance schedule and properly training all employees to clean your soft serve equipment, you are taking positive steps to avoid food-borne illnesses in your customers. After all, no one wants their soft serve with a side of bacteria.