Re-usable Cups Food Safety Considerations

We have had a number of queries in relation to food business’s health and safety responsibilities when accepting reusable or keep cups. The following is advice we have received from the FSAI:

Essentially the re-use of coffee cups is permitted by the service sector, however consideration must be given to the safety implications of this practise. While the FSAI has not published guidance in this issue, we can provide the following advice.

The food business would not be responsible for the hygiene of the re-usable cups as this would be the responsibility of each individual customer. The food business would however, have to consider the acceptance of re-usable cups that are not in a good hygienic condition as this could potentially affect the overall hygiene status within the business. Therefore, this risk would need to be assessed by each food business and included as part of the overall food safety management system of the business.

Any food business considering accepting re-usable cups should discuss this with their inspecting officer and they must realise that the liability could rest with the business should a consumer become ill as a result of the hygiene within (which could indeed be as a result of the re-used cups).