ST. PAUL, MN — Cleaning products supplier Ecolab, Inc. (NYSE:ECL) is echoing a message from the International Kitchen Exhaust Cleaning Association (IKECA).
Anticipating Fire Prevention Week October 6-12, IKECA, a nonprofit trade organization that promotes standards for kitchen exhaust cleaning, is reminding foodservice operators of the dangers of grease and the importance of maintaining kitchen hood and exhaust systems.
"A fire may start on a cooking line, but it will really accelerate if there''s grease built up in the hood and exhaust system," said IKECA President Rod Getz. "Grease builds up as part of the cooking process, providing fuel for the fire to exist inside the duct work. Every kitchen exhaust system should be cleaned on a regular basis."
The frequency of the cleaning depends on the type of cooking and the volume cooked
- An average restaurant would need kitchen exhaust cleaning on a quarterly basis
- A high-volume or solid fuel cooking facility should be receiving service bi-monthly or even
Source: Mike Gustafson, Ecolab''s general manager for Facilitec, which provides kitchen exhaust cleaning services and rooftop grease containment products
- IKECA strongly recommends not only just cleaning the hood, but the entire exhaust system
"That can be more difficult and in-depth than cleaning just the hood," Getz added. "But if it''s not completely clean, it doesn''t provide any fire protection — it just looks nice."
IKECA has established stringent standards and practices for contractors engaged in kitchen exhaust cleaning, conducted a variety of educational programs, and worked with influential code setting bodies such as NFPA to improve existing codes and regulations.
Further information about IKECA is available on www.ikeca.org.