Canadian Pizza Magazine

Features Business and Operations Health & Safety
pizza on fire: Green clean your business


January 14, 2010
By Tom Stankiewicz

Topics

There are tons of cleaning products to choose from when it comes to making your pizza store shine. There has been a lot of emphasis in recent years on keeping our environment clean and how each of us can contribute to making it happen. There are constant advertisements on television and in newspapers about different ways and simple solutions to keep our planet green. Along with conventional cleaning products, many stores now offer new brands of non-toxic, biodegradable, and made-from-renewable-resources cleaners. As consumers, we now have a choice that simply wasn’t there before. I recently decided to update my knowledge about this topic and came across some interesting information and considerations that are helping me to choose greener products to suit my needs.

There are tons of cleaning products to choose from when it comes to
making your pizza store shine. There has been a lot of emphasis in
recent years on keeping our environment clean and how each of us can
contribute to making it happen. There are constant advertisements on
television and in newspapers about different ways and simple solutions
to keep our planet green. Along with conventional cleaning products,
many stores now offer new brands of non-toxic, biodegradable, and
made-from-renewable-resources cleaners. As consumers, we now have a
choice that simply wasn’t there before. I recently decided to update my
knowledge about this topic and came across some interesting information
and considerations that are helping me to choose greener products to
suit my needs.

Many would agree that, for pizzeria stores that are part of the food
industry, it makes sense to move along with this new green trend in
cleaning. I’ve had a few of my customers ask me what cleaning products
we use at Bondi’s Pizza. At first it was a bit of a surprise to hear
that question. Then I realized that people are becoming more conscious
about what chemicals their food might come in contact with. I know, for
myself, that this is when I started to pay more attention to which
cleaning products our business uses. If you decide to try out green
products, you will not only help to keep our environment clean, but you
will show inquiring customers that their meals are prepared in a
healthier environment, with fewer chemicals and toxins. 

My mom has always used vinegar and baking soda to clean our house.
Trying to get her to use something else was a lost battle. She knew
that it left the house spotless and shining, was inexpensive and, most
of all, was a healthy choice. When you read up on the topic of green
cleaning products, you’ll notice that vinegar is exactly what is being
advertised as the number one green cleaning product. If you’re looking
for an all-purpose cleaner, all you have to do is add some warm water
to vinegar or baking soda.

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Another question being asked is how chemicals in cleaning products
affect your employees. Does anyone have allergies that might be
triggered by the chemicals in the conventional cleaning products? I
worked for a small coffee shop once and the only cleaning product that
the owners used was bleach. It was their choice for keeping that place
clean, but at the same time employees and customers were breathing it
in. Those who advocate the green cleaning solution argue that it is
difficult to ensure that none of the chemicals are transferred into
food when, for example, the countertops are wiped with it constantly.
If you have trained other people to clean and you don’t do it yourself
very often, it might be very easy to not even think about it at all.   

As well, it’s sometimes easy to forget that what we clean with affects
the indoor air quality. For many pizzerias, especially those that offer
dining, it’s difficult to let the fresh air go through by opening
windows. Everyone who visits the store will breathe in the toxins. In
such situations, it helps to have fresh plants that will help to filter
the indoor air quality.

After considering these factors, in the end, the decision is the
business owner’s. For many, it comes down to the cost and effectiveness
of the new green cleaning products. I am sure some operators will
choose to wait until there is a greater demand from customers that the
food industry use more environmentally friendly products. After reading
extensively about this topic, one thing became clear to me. At some
point, maybe in a few years or longer, the green cleaning products will
dominate the market. They will become the new conventional cleaning
products that will be used to clean homes as well as businesses. If you
don’t like to be the last in line, my advice is to educate yourself
about this new trend and slowly incorporate green cleaning into your
daily business routine.


Tom Stankiewicz has been in the pizza business for more than 15 years.
He has been the proprietor of Bondi’s Pizza in London since 2000 and is
president of the Canadian Pizza Team.


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