The first ever World Food Safety Day, proposed by the United Nations General Assembly in December 2018, would be celebrated on 7 June 2019. The theme of the inaugural food safety day is 'Food safety is everyone's business'.
Around 600 million cases of food borne illness are being reported around the world in a year. It means that one among ten people is affected with illness related to food safety.
Food safety refers to handling, preparing and storing food in a way to best reduce the risk of individuals becoming sick from food borne diseases. It is concerned with various aspects of everyday life. Food safety aims to prevent food from becoming contaminated and thus causing food poisoning or other food borne illness.
Here are some of the major steps that need to be followed to maintain high standards of food safety:
1. The most important factor is properly cleaning and sanitizing the surfaces, equipments and utensils used for cooking.
2. Maintaining a high level of personal hygiene, especially hand washing.
3. Storing, chilling and heating cooked food correctly. The changes in temperatures, environment and equipments too play a vital role in food safety.
4. Effective pest control. The presence of germs in places where food is cooked may cause contamination.
5. Knowledge about food allergies, food poisoning and food intolerance is important.
These are the 10 factors that need to be kept in mind while preparing food at home or at a hotel.
1. Do not cough or sneeze while preparing the food or near-cooked food.
2. Smoking is strictly prohibited inside the kitchen and its vicinity as well.
3. If your hand gets wet while cooking, do not wipe it on your clothes.
4. Do not touch or scratch any body parts while preparing food.
5. Do not scoop out food using fingers to taste it.
6. Use a spoon to scoop out small amount of food for tasting. However, take care that the same spoon is not used again.
7. It is better not to wear any ornaments while cooking food.
8. Do not touch ready to eat food with bare hands. Use a tong or wear gloves before serving the already cooked food items. Cooked food items like appam or bread displayed in a bakery rack shouldn’t be touched while serving it.
9. Access to clean food is a basic right for everyone. It is a crime to adulterate the food items.
10. It is a criminal offence to adulterate the food items for gaining profits.