Unhappiness With Mandatory Glove Rule Persists In California

Posted on February 3, 2014

Even though it’s been over a month now since a rule on mandatory glove usage in restaurants came into effect, complaints continue as chefs grapple with what they see as unnecessary restrictions.  The Los Angeles Times explores the issue yet again in a new report.

For those unfamiliar, a new law has been enacted that requires chefs (and really anyone who comes into contact with food) to wear gloves during preparation.  Although online at the beginning of the year, restaurants and employees will get a grace period until the end of June, with rigorous enforcement from entities like the Department of Public Health of Los Angeles set to begin next year.

But chefs are already trying to cope with the new rule, and they’re not happy.  Sushi chefs and bartenders, who are included within the rule because of the use of garnishes, are particularly negative.  For many sushi chefs, it’s a matter of being able to really feel the food during preparation, while bartenders worry about how customers will perceive them.

Some have pointed out that this rule designed to reduce foodborne illness potential could actually do the opposite.  The concern is that some will look upon glove usage as a stand-in for proper hand-washing procedures, thus letting the gloves become contaminated the same way that bare skin would.

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