Safe X Secure US: Restaurants / Food Service

Quick Guide to Implementing New Health and Hygiene Guidelines

Today we take a deeper look at the Restaurant and Food Service industry. This category applies to restaurant employees in the front and back of the house, like bartenders, wait staff, hostsbussers, chefs, cooks, managers and dishwashers. Additionally, food service is made up of producers and distributors of food, equipment, and services, including equipment suppliers and food and beverage suppliers.

Keep reading to find recommended health and hygiene essential products to help keep restaurant and food service provider environments clean, healthy and productive.

Restaurant/Food Service guidelines, requirements and standards may continue to change and evolvePlease review these recommendations in accordance with Federal, State and local regulations and guidance, as well as appropriate industry best practices.

Social Distancing

Workers and patrons should social distance whenever possible.

  • Limit the number of people allowed in designated areas and managing access and movement within the building. 
  • Encourage distancing by moving seating areas six feet apart. If moving tables is not an option, consider closing off certain tables or chairs or utilize room dividers and partitions, like clear mobile dividers from Ghent. Another option is to incorporate cleanable room dividers, like the Concertina from Lumeah. 
  • Where salad bars and buffets are permitted, they must have sneeze guards like plastic protection screens from Ghent 
  • Use floor markings to encourage and remind staff and customers of distancing. This can easily be achieved by using high quality and durable vibrantly colored tape, like Duck Brand Duck Tape. You can also create a traffic-flow pattern on the floor with tape.

Personal Hygiene

Everyone should wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially during key times (like before prepping and serving food, eating and after using the restroom) when people are likely to get and spread germs.

  • Add additional signage, stations and protocol to emphasize hand hygiene.
  • Stock all handwashing stations and bathrooms with antimicrobial hand soap. We like the convenient wall dispensers and foaming hand soap from Dial.
  • Hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol should be readily available to staff and guests. We also recommend putting hand sanitizer throughout to encourage everyone to use it often. Dial offers gel and foam hand sanitizers with moisturizing options and touchless hand sanitizing solutions.
  • Single-use disposable towels are one of the safest options for drying hands. We recommend using a sustainable choice for paper products, like 100% Recycled Folded Paper Towels from MarcalThey also offer 100% recycled facial tissue and toilet paper.

Disinfection / Sanitization

Cleaning and disinfecting of all high touch and high traffic areas should occur in accordance with CDC guidelines, including at least twice per day in high traffic areas and in between seatings.

  • Thoroughly detail, clean and sanitize the entire facility, especially if it has been closed.  
  • Between seatings, clean and sanitize table condiments, digital ordering devices, check presenters, self-service areas, tabletops, and common touch areas. Single-use items should be discarded. Consider using rolled silverware and eliminating table presets.  
  • Clean and sanitize reusable menus.  
  • Where salad bars and buffets are permitted, change, wash and sanitize utensils frequently.
  • Avoid all food contact surfaces when using disinfectants.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting should be frequent (multiple times per day) with an emphasis on frequently touched hard non-porous surfaces. Countertop shields from Waddell and desktop plastic protection screens from Ghent can help make cleaning and disinfecting easier in certain areas.
  • Use an EPA-approved disinfectant that meets CDC requirements for use against viruses, bacteria and other airborne and bloodborne pathogens. Lysol and Zep both offer a variety of cleaning products like disinfectant spray, all-purpose cleaner (with and without bleach), professional antibacterial cleaner and wipes to help with cleaning, disinfection and sanitization. Fresh Products carry a quat-based surface cleaner and deodorizer that can be used on a variety of surfaces and is extremely effective at eliminating virtually all odors on contact. Fresh also offers urinal deodorizing screens.


To prevent illness, employees and customers should implement extra precautions that promote wellness.

  • If providing a “grab and go” service, stock coolers to no more than minimum levels. 
  • Remove lemons and unwrapped straws from self-service drink stations.
  • Discard paper menus after each customer use.
  • Employees and customers should follow local and state requirements when it comes to Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) like facemasks and gloves. Medline and Curad both carry a variety of face masks, face shields, and disposable gloves.
  • An additional way restaurants can keep customers safe is by implementing temperature scanning and facial ID equipment for employees and patrons. The results can easily be monitored in real-time allowing staff to take necessary precautionsMedline offers contactless thermometers. OneScreen GoSafe allows for an orderly way to check employee temperatures as well as mask compliance.

 Additional details and resources can be found in the full Safe X Secure White paper.

If you would like more information about any of our recommended products, email us at [email protected]. Include your name, business name, location(s) and contact information and a Highlands representative will be in touch with you.

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