Updated 26 July 2023
Commercial Kitchen Extraction Regulations
Effective ventilation in commercial kitchens isn’t just about providing a comfortable environment for your staff and guests—it’s a legal obligation.
Under The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992, employers are mandated to provide efficient and appropriate ventilation in every enclosed workspace. This becomes even more essential in the heat of commercial cooking settings, where significant amounts of fumes, vapours, and heat are released. Hence, the installation of canopy hoods for secure extraction is a must for any food establishment.
Whether you’re new to the foodservice industry or looking to enhance your knowledge, this guide aims to simplify the essentials of the Commercial Kitchen Extraction Regulations. Armed with this information, you can ensure your kitchen remains safe, compliant, and efficient.
commercial kitchen ventilation requirements
Effective kitchen ventilation systems need to cater to a range of factors, including:
Effective kitchen ventilation systems are designed to:
- Remove hot air and bring in cool, clean air.
- Remove cooking fumes at the source.
- Ensure air movement in the kitchen doesn’t cause discomfort for employees.
- Provide a comfortable working environment for employees.
- Be easy to clean and maintain.
- Prevent the risk of carbon monoxide accumulate.
- Be quiet and vibration-free.
Your ventilation system needs to take into account:
- The layout of the kitchen.
- The number of staff.
- The need for simple cleaning and maintenance.
- The amount of cooking equipment.
- The cooking load.
The role of canopy hoods in your kitchen cannot be understated—they need to be effective and ensure the removal of cooking fumes. For this to happen efficiently, the canopy needs to be of a suitable size and have effective extraction capabilities. Ideally, there should be a canopy hood for every appliance that generates heat and is close to the source.
The airflow into the canopy should be constant, and the canopies and ductwork need to be designed from material that discourages dirt, grease, and condensation. Additionally, grease filters must be easy to remove, and the design should accommodate regular cleaning and catering equipment maintenance.
Effective ventilation systems replace the extracted air—this can be either mechanical or natural, but it should be fresh and clear air from outside. Utilizing fine mesh grilles and filters can help restrict the ventilation from unwanted pests. Importantly, clean air should not be brought in from dirty areas, such as smoking areas or near where waste is stored.
Maintaining a balance of cool incoming air and extracted hot air will prevent the kitchen from becoming uncomfortably hot. Mechanical systems should direct cool air towards hot workstations. Alternatively, air conditioning or fixed fans can be employed, provided they don’t interfere with the air extraction system.
Selecting the right extraction system designer
Good designers will have vast experience in designing extraction systems. Always ask for evidence of previous work, and look at their customer feedback and reviews. Good engineers will take into account a wide range of considerations, for example:
- How you plan to use your kitchen.
- The presence of gas appliances ensures an adequate supply of air.
- Information about the types of catering equipment used within the kitchen and any cleaning requirements.
- The building shape and structure to assess any limitations.
- The requirements of the air cleaning system.
- Food hygiene requirements.
- Heat control.
Choosing a professional extraction system installer
Like designers, professional extraction system installers need to understand the design performance and capacity of your ventilation system to ensure adequate ventilation. Therefore, always seek experienced and respected installers that can evidence their skills.
If you don’t have a previous installation or data isn’t available, the installer will recommission the system and produce a detailed performance report.
If you are installing a gas appliance, you should also ensure the installer is a Gas Safe registered engineer. The gas installer will need to know the specific air inlet requirements obtained from the manufacturer. Your gas installer will then check these requirements are met by your ventilation system while considering any existing appliances.
Frequently Asked Questions
At Eurotec FM, we’ve helped hundreds of businesses install commercial extraction systems. Here, we’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions by our customers and clients:
Do you need extraction in a commercial kitchen?
By law, you are required to have fully operational extraction systems installed in any commercial kitchen setting. As a result, canopy hoods should be installed above any cooking appliance to remove fumes and vapour.
Do I need planning permission to install an extraction system?
You will require planning permission to install, replace or move extraction systems in your commercial kitchen. This is required when any part of the extraction system is fitted to the outside of your property, changing the property’s external appearance.
Do I need a canopy for electric cooking appliances?
Electric and Gas appliances have different extraction requirements. However, both types require an extraction canopy. Therefore, we calculate extraction rates on a case by case basis, taking into consideration the length, width and height of your kitchen as well as your appliance specifications.
For more detailed insights, consider these resources:
At Eurotec FM, we pride ourselves on our proficiency in commercial kitchen design, installation, and extraction system solutions. We’re committed to delivering exceptional services to the foodservice industry throughout Essex, Kent, and London.
Ready to ensure your commercial kitchen is safe, efficient, and compliant? Explore our Commercial Kitchen Extraction services.