Dining Safety by Design During COVID19

The age of COVID19 has brought significant challenges for the foodservice industry as a whole including, but not limited to, Business and Industry, Health Care, Education, Restaurants and Hospitality, to mention a few.  Navigating and understanding the design of our existing spaces so that we can operate a foodservice facility can be a bit intimidating.

Dining Safety by Design During COVID19

Some of the issues in Dining Safety by Design During COVID19 that we now are having to address:

  • The traditional Salad Bar and Buffet programs are having to be restructured or re-programmed to meet new food guard and protection requirements dictated by local health agencies
  • Traffic flow and queue areas need to be identified by designating the proper path of travel, helping to maintain proper social distancing according to the type of foodservice operation.
  • Interior and exterior dining tables and seating types need to be properly arranged per local health agency requirements.
  • Food delivery and protection methods are having to be given creative thoughtfulness to enhance the customer experience.
  • Cleaning protocols to ensure the safety of both worker and customer.

Fortunately, there are many resources available to the foodservice business owner. In my state of residence, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment https://covid19.colorado.gov/safer-at-home/restaurants-food-services  has many helpful tips for local foodservice businesses.  One that I thought particularly interesting was the social distance calculator for the larger venues. Essentially stating that for each 1000 square feet of space, you are allowed an occupancy of 5 persons if you are using 30% of that space for fixtures and furnishings. Other topics to help guide owners in their operations are specifically outlined for Bars and Brewery’s, Outdoor Dining Service, Indoor Dining Service and Walk-up Dining Service, to name a few.

In some cases, an operator may seek professional consulting services to help disseminate, interpret and assist in the implementation of some of the multitude of documents and regulations while dining safety by design during COVID19.  The COVID19 regulations are part and partial to the daily regulatory health department requirements where consulting and planning services may be necessary.

My 35 years of experience in the Foodservice Design and Consulting business has never seen anything like the pandemic experience we are enduring in this trying time. I believe what we all agree on is that protecting the safety of the workers who work so hard to provide us service and the customers who bring us their much valued business, is of the utmost importance.

Please watch for an invite to my upcoming Webinar “Redesigning Your Food Establishment During COVID 19” and become a DiningSafetyAlliance member. It’s Free.

Written by Guest Author: Ben Pollock bhpdesign.co@gmail.com

Ben has involved in the foodservice design consulting profession for more than 35 years and has a clear understanding of the design needs for foodservice operations. He offers his project management and design skills to those food establishments in need.