5 Best Catering Thermometers For Your HACCP Plan
HACCP temperatures need to be taken several times a day, every day. So finding the best food safety thermometers for your business is really important. The main type of thermometer that you will need for taking your daily checks is a penetration probe, as this can be used for many different things. Read on to learn more about them, plus our favourite five HACCP thermometers we recommend for catering applications.
What is a HACCP thermometer?
A HACCP thermometer is one that is compatible with your business’ food safety plan and meets the requirements of the temperatures you need to record. This might be a thermometer with a between-pack probe for checking incoming deliveries, a fridge thermometer to monitor your storage temperatures or a penetration probe for your food preparation and service.
What thermometers are best for food safety temperatures?
For taking the internal temperature of your food, you need to use a penetration probe. This will be essential for taking a number of temperatures required by your HACCP plan:
● Refrigerating: A fridge thermometer will be necessary to quickly check that the air temperature in your fridges and freezers are within the recommended range, however, a probe thermometer will also enable you to take temperatures of the actual food. This will give a more accurate idea of whether the food is at a safe temperature.
● Cooking: Ensuring that certain foods such as poultry have reached a safe cooked temperature is essential for the prevention of food poisoning. Probing cooked food also helps to achieve consistent quality, such as cooking steaks to the customers’ liking.
● Hot holding: If keeping food in a hot hold before serving, it must be held above 60 °C to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.
● Cooling: Cooling hot food needs to be completed rapidly, so that it passes through the danger zone (temperatures between 5 and 60 °C) as quickly as possible. The longer food stays in the danger zone, the more opportunity bacteria has to multiply. Monitoring your cook-chill processes with a thermometer is essential.
● Reheating: Reheated foods must be properly cooked to 74 °C to be safe to consume.
Food probes come in a variety of options depending on your budget and requirements. Some factors to take into consideration when purchasing a penetration probe are the level of speed and accuracy you would like, the durability of the casing, and whether you would like to use one unit with several interchangeable probes for different applications.
We have rounded up our top 5 penetration probe thermometers for your HACCP temperature requirements below.
How should I care for my food thermometer?
Once you have selected the right thermometers for your HACCP plan, it’s important to look after them properly to ensure they continue to keep your food safe.
Wiping your probe clean after every use with anti-bacterial probe wipes will prevent contaminating food with harmful bacteria.
You will also need to have a plan in place for how you calibrate your thermometers, to ensure that they are reading correctly. This will depend on the types of thermometers you have, how often you use them and how you prefer to carry this out. Learn more about calibration here.
Top 5 Catering Thermometers for HACCP Temperature Control
ThermaLite: The Essential Food Thermometer
The ThermaLite thermometer has the fundamentals of an essential food thermometer: a fast and accurate thermistor probe, a long battery life of 5,000 hours and a simple, user-friendly design. The ThermaLite also has a Calcheck 0.0 °C function, allowing users to verify the instrument’s accuracy at any time for confidence in every check.
From £28.00 ex VAT.
Shop the ThermaLite thermometer.
Thermapen ONE: Superior speed & Accuracy
The Thermapen ONE is a favourite of food businesses, celebrity chefs and home cooks alike for good reason. With an unrivalled response time of one second, accuracy of ±0.3 °C and a five-year guarantee, the Thermapen One is the best choice for producing food that is both safe and of an extremely high standard. Designed for busy kitchens, features such as the folding probe, waterproof casing, rotating display and motion-sensing sleep mode make temperature checks a breeze.
£56.00 ex VAT.
Shop the Thermapen ONE.
Therma 20: High Accuracy Thermistor
Unlike the Thermapen ONE thermometer, the Therma 20 is a thermistor thermometer. Thermistors are generally more accurate than thermocouples, though with slower read times. The Therma 20 has a high system of accuracy of ±0.4 °C, which is guaranteed for the life of the thermometer. This means the thermometer will never drift and show inaccurate readings, so you can always be confident in the accuracy of your measurements.
The Therma 20 unit also has the benefit of interchangeable probes. Customise your unit with your choice of penetration probes, air probes and more to meet your requirements.
£68.00 ex VAT.
Shop the Therma 20.
Food Check: Economic Two-Handed Design
A popular economic choice, the Food Check thermometer offers fast, accurate temperatures and a fixed, wired thermocouple probe.
The two-handed design is popular for being able to take temperatures further away from the body, while still being able to read the measurements on the unit clearly. Using two hands to complete the checks prevents employees from attempting to carry out two jobs at once, instead focusing all attention on taking accurate readings.
The Food Check is an ideal mid-range thermometer with robust casing for fuss-free daily HACCP checks.
£60 ex VAT
Shop the Food Check.
Therma Metal Series: Designed for the Harshest Environments
Rugged extruded and powder-coated aluminium casing makes the Therma Metal thermometers the best choice for harsh environments, such as food processing.
There are three thermometers in the series, each offers a different probe type. The CaterTemp Metal includes a fixed thermocouple probe, while the Therma K Metal offers a range of interchangeable thermocouple probes. The Therma 20 is ideal for those looking for interchangeable thermistor probes.
From £86.50 ex VAT.
Shop the Therma Metal Series.