hy is Food Safety and Hygiene training important? According to the Food Standards Agency, there are 2.4 million cases of foodborne illness per year in the UK. Also, around 180 people die in the UK from foodborne diseases every year.
Food hygiene and safety training provides employees with a thorough understanding of safe food preparation and serving practices. As a result, they can work safely and protect customers from health risks of contaminated food.
What is food safety?
Food safety refers to all essential practices that businesses must follow when processing, preparing, handling, storing and distributing food. Food safety measures reduce the risk of contamination and prevent foodborne illness or food-related injuries.
A variety of contaminants in food can cause harm to a consumer:
- Biological contaminants such as bacteria, viruses, moulds and parasites.
- Physical contaminants such as glass, screws and hair.
- Chemical contaminants such as pesticides and cleaning chemicals.
- Allergenic contaminants such as peanuts, milk and eggs.
What are the 4 Cs of food hygiene?
The 4 Cs of food hygiene are the four basic principles of food hygiene and safety practices. The are cleaning, cooking, chilling and cross-contamination. You can use the 4 Cs to keep food safe to eat and prevent foodborne illness.
Effective cleaning helps to prevent bacteria from spreading on food. When handling and preparing food, bacteria and other contaminating substances can spread via hands, equipment, food and surfaces. Staff who work with food must wash their hands properly, before handling any food, and after handling raw food. They must use appropriate products to clean and sanitise equipment and surfaces between tasks, especially after handling raw meat. Food handlers must wash fruits and vegetables, but not meat, poultry, eggs or seafood. Also, staff must always keep the kitchen area clean and clutter free. Failure to clean thoroughly is one of the most common reasons why food businesses face prosecution.
Thorough cooking kills harmful bacteria in food. Staff must cook food at the right temperature and for the correct length of time to kill the bacteria that can make people sick. Food handlers should use a food thermometer to ensure that cooked food is at a right temperature and safe to eat. If they are not serving food straight away, they must keep it out of the temperature danger zone where bacteria grow most rapidly. They could use a heat source such as a slow cooker, chafing dish or preheated warming tray to keep food at a safe temperature.
Proper food chilling helps to stop harmful bacteria from growing. Since bacteria most rapidly multiplies between 8 °C and 60 °C, it is very important not to leave food standing around at room temperature. Anyone who handles food must follow storage instructions, only keep chilled foods at room temperature during preparation, put food that needs to be chilled in the fridge straight away and keep track of when food should be used or thrown away.
Cross-contamination is one of the most common causes of food poisoning. It occurs when bacteria spreads between food, surfaces, equipment or hands. Raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs can spread bacteria to ready-to-eat foods, so you should keep them separate. Staff who handle food must separate or thoroughly clean and disinfect equipment and surfaces after handling these products and wash their hands.
Also, staff who handle food must take great care to avoid cross-contamination of allergens. Cooking does not remove food allergens. Even a small allergen trace in food can cause an allergic reaction. It can severely affect a person’s health or even be fatal.
What are the benefits of Food Handling & Hygiene training?
Food hygiene training is a legal requirement. Anyone whose work involves food must receive proper supervision, instruction and training in food hygiene to be able to do their job safely.
1. Prevent food related illness
Most food-borne illnesses occur from improper storage, undercooking, poor personal hygiene or contaminated food preparation surfaces or equipment. Therefore it is important for employees to understand how their behavior and activities contribute to food hygiene and safety in the workplace. They need to be aware of what they can do to prevent harm to customers’ health.
2. Reduce food waste
Food safety training ensures that food handlers are aware of good food handling and storage practices to avoid food waste. This allows them to ensure good food quality, minimize waste, and save the business time and money.
3. Improve staff efficiency
Correct training and regular application of food safety principles improves employee efficiency. When staff know how to handle and store food, there are fewer errors, and customers get a higher level of service.
4. Promote positive workplace environment
When employees receive food hygiene and safety training, they feel confident and competent to complete their tasks. The training emphasises the importance of good practices and why food safety is essential. This means that employees understand why they should follow strict workplace policies regarding cleaning and handling food.
5. Build a positive business reputation
Training helps to maintain good food hygiene and safety standards and promote a positive business reputation. Customers will recognise that your food is safe and prepared in a clean and hygienic environment. Your business will receive more positive reviews, which will attract more customers and increase business profit.
You can get more training from RCL Safety Centre thru https: www.safetycentre.ng/training_register
At RCL Safety Centre this training is also available in different Nigerian languages like PIDGIN,YORUBA,HAUSA AND IGBO
Our company (RCL Safety Centre) is an indigenous company dedicated to Health, Safety and Environment Training and Services.
We are technical partners of the National Industrial Safety Council of Nigeria (NISCN) as well as approved training partners of most major International Occupational Safety and Health organizations like NEBOSH, and corporate members of ISPON (Institute of Safety Professionals of Nigeria) with thousands of personnel trained in various areas till date.
For more information visit our website: www.safetycentre.ng
Contact us on: 08099700070, 09057666623 or 08164363532