Hooters might get food safety culture

I love living in North Carolina. The weather is awesome (it’s going to be 70 on Sunday), the BBQ is awesome and, today, we have the best Hooters kitchen crew in the U.S.

Hooters Corporate put out a press release congratulating the Concord, NC franchise on having the 2008 Kitchen Crew of the year.  The press release says that the selection criterion was based on more than their ability to shake chicken wings. The crew was also evaluated on food safety awareness, performance and productivity.

Cool, positive consequences for food safety awareness. Although awareness doesn’t always translate into practice, it’s a start. It demonstrates to the staff in the organization that food safety is something they should all value (and a prize is a nice incentive).

The prize?  Some cash, a title belt and ……. custom belt buckles.  Awesome. 

The kitchen crew was presented with $10,000 cash, (to divide among the kitchen staff by tenure) as well as custom belt buckles and a HKCY title belt which will hang in the restaurant until next year’s winner is announced. The crew will also receive a feature in Hooters Magazine. In total the Concord Hooters kitchen crew received $20,000 in cash and prizes between the annual and quarterly winnings.

"We have an amazing kitchen crew in Concord," said Skip Pray, Regional Manager for Hooters of America, Inc. "It is nice to see them share the limelight with the Hooters Girls and be recognized and rewarded for their hard work."

I’ve been to Hooters a few times. I’ve never really liked the food, but I guess that’s not the point.  While I explore the state, I’m going to make sure I stop in Concord, NC and snap a pic of the title belt (and a pic of their inspection score).

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About Ben Chapman

Dr. Ben Chapman is a professor and food safety extension specialist at North Carolina State University. As a teenager, a Saturday afternoon viewing of the classic cable movie, Outbreak, sparked his interest in pathogens and public health. With the goal of less foodborne illness, his group designs, implements, and evaluates food safety strategies, messages, and media from farm-to-fork. Through reality-based research, Chapman investigates behaviors and creates interventions aimed at amateur and professional food handlers, managers, and organizational decision-makers; the gate keepers of safe food. Ben co-hosts a biweekly podcast called Food Safety Talk and tries to further engage folks online through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and, maybe not surprisingly, Pinterest. Follow on Twitter @benjaminchapman.