Food hygiene and safety training is important for moral, financial and legal reasons. But there is much debate in whether training of food handlers does actually make a difference.
Some academic studies conclude training does lead to better food safety knowledge, positive attitudes and improved food handling practices. There are also suggestions that most outbreaks of food poisoning are due human errors caused by untrained food handlers and thus supports the need for training.Whereas others would strongly argue that food hygiene and safety training does not necessarily translate into improved food handling practices. Furthermore, some would argue food poisoning still occurs on a significant scale despite an increase in trained food handlers. But there is agreement that food hygiene and safety training does provide food handlers with essential ‘underpinning knowledge’ that food handlers can apply in their work. Furthermore, regular training can improve practice by keeping food handlers well informed on changes in legislation and best practice, and current food safety hazards.
Food safety and hygiene training is effective in improving risk perception and reduction when the right factors are in place. These include: scheduling time for training, teaching and learning styles that accommodate the needs of candidates from diverse backgrounds, and supportive managers and supervisors willing to adopt new practices. Food safety and hygiene training must be commensurate with the work activity. This is important to contextualise learning to a practical working environment.
Training alone might not have a impact in reducing food poisoning, but does have part in raising awareness of risky practices. No training puts customers at risk and will have detrimental impact upon the food the business. Take time in deciding in what knowledge needs to shared and how. Think about how competence will be assessed. Finally, evaluate the effectiveness of training. Does it support a postive food safety culture?
Percipio Training offer a wide range of food safety courses. These include: food safety (levels 1-4), HACCP (levels 2-4), Auditing skills, Allergen management and awareness, and food safety culture. Please do explore our website to find out more about these courses. We can deliver onsite training anywhere in the UK, including Manchester, Birmingham, Milton Keynes and London.