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NSF Sneeze Guard Requirements

Vertical shield Sneeze Guards

Vertical food shields or sneeze guards, are basically a partition with a pass through area under the shield.    A vertical food shield is not intended to be used as a self serve sneeze guard where the customer can access the food, instead allows plated food to be passed under the shield to the customer.   This style of sneeze guard is designed to protect the displayed food from contamination by bacteria or other germs which can result from people sneezing, coughing, or even simple exhalation at close distances to the food.    Full height End Panels are required to prevent a customer from contaminating the food from the sides.

Figure 1

  1. Vertical food shields shall provide a barrioer to a minimum height of 60 inches above the finished floor the customer will stan d on (
  2. The maximum gap between the counter and the bottom edge of the shield is 6". (
  3. End panels are required for all shields that are not within 3" of a wall. The maximum gap from the bottom edge of the end panel and counter is 1.5" (
  4. The minimum horizontal distance between the front inside edge of the displayed food and the leading edge of the shield is 3/4 of the shield clearance. (

NSF-Full Service

Self Service Sneeze Guards       (figure 1)