Oneida Food Service

Flatware Use & Care

Your fine silverplate and stainless flatware and holloware will give you extra long service and will always look great when properly cared for. We off the following recommendations:


A minimum amount of handling is required when perforated cylinders in a portable rack are used to transport, wash and dispense flatware.

Always sort flatware tines, bowls and blades down when flatware is transported and washed in the same cylinder. This prevents contamination when the items are removed for setting the tables.

Sort flatware tines, bowls and blades up when using a system where the flatware is transferred from a cleaning cylinder to a storage cylinder by inversion.

Separate flatware, holloware and china in bus trays.


Remove all remnants of food from metalware items immediately after use. Avoid using steel wool or metal scrapers.

Always separate flatware and holloware for pre-soaking and use a plastic or stainless steel pan, never aluminum.

Pre-soak and wash metalware immediately after its removal from the table. Do not leave metalware in the pre-soak solution for more than 20 minutes before it is washed. Change the pre-soak solution after two or three cycles of use. Chemicals accumulate in the pre-soak and may cause harm.

Load the washing machine with the openings of hollow pieces facing down.

Do not use a pre-soak solution containing acidic silver de-tarnishing agents, including chlorides, bromides or iodides, as these products cause severe corrosion.

Always wash your metalware in hot water and make sure you choose a cleaning agent free of abrasive or corrosive qualities that may damage your metalware.

Avoid low-temperature dishwashing. It is not suited for metalware.


Always rinse clean metalware in water of at least 180 degrees.

Consider adding a wetting agent to the rinse to prevent minerals in the water from staining your metalware.

Utilize a softener if you have very hard water. A high chloride content in the water can also be damaging.


Always make sure your metalware is clean and dry before storing to avoid corrosion and oxidation marks. Keep your holloware pieces together in a dry area. Plastic or wooden racks provide the best storage.

Additional Points Pertaining to Silverplate Only:

Detarnishing: Critical to the care of silverplate is proper de-tarnishing, particularly to burnishing. Pieces should be de-tarnished about every 15 days.

Consult a reputable manufacturer of the silverplate or of the de-tarnishing product for the method best suited to your needs. Always follow the manufacturer’s directions carefully.

Always remove knives with stainless steel blades from the de-tarnishing solution within 30 seconds. Longer exposure tends to lead to discoloration and corrosion of the blades.

Burnishing: Invest in a fine vibratory or tumble-type burnishing machine, manufactured in sizes to fit any operation. Always keep your burnish clean and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Do not burnish hollow handle knives.

Storing: Provide adequate space when storing, ideally away from air conditioning and sulfur containing vapors.