The steps followed during preparation, handling, and the storage of food are all referred to as food safety since it helps in ensuring that all food related injuries and illnesses are prevented. The transitioning period of food or a product from its production source to the consumer involves several channels that can cause adverse health effects. To avoid this, several practices and procedures for handling food have been put in place for every stage of production to reduce the chances of these risks and harm to consumers.
Food safety is a domain across several fields. All together these fields strive to ensure that the process of food production applies safety measures from the sourcing, manufacturing, preparation, storing, and selling of the products. Food production and distribution are always on a constant increase hence the need to place measures that govern food safety. Countries all across the globe have put in place different regulatory bodies that help to enforce and ensure that the food produced domestically meets the food safety standards set.
Food safety laws in place are usually based on two concepts discussed below.
The Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points is an aspect that uses a risk-based approach in a systematic analysis on the prevention of any form of contamination during the manufacture, packaging, and supply of food products. These help to minimize the occurrence of health hazards that originate from food safety issues, therefore, preventing the situation before it occurs instead of analyzing it after the event. It involves working towards eliminating and controlling contamination sources and strictly following hygiene practices.
Good Manufacturing Practices are the internationally used quality assurance guidelines in the production of consumables. The guidelines highlight the rules that should be adhered to by manufacturers to ensure that the food products distributed are of high quality and are safe for human use.
Importance of Food Safety
The benefits of ensuring food safety are realized both financially and ethically. The process of not following the specifications on food safety is also dire and can lead to a business undergoing several losses. Whenever there is a food safety concern about the distributed batch of products, companies have to recall their products. Food businesses always face dramatic interferences in such cases due to the cost incurred on recalls. Food safety concerns have also been on the rise due to resulting problems and diseases worldwide. People suffer different illnesses and death from food safety issues, especially small kids. Such issues slow down a country’s socio-economic growth.
Food safety concerns focus on the methods of processing, handling, and storing food such that they are exposed to fewer chances of contamination and risking the lives and health of individuals who consume it. This is a multidisciplinary concern since it affects many aspects of our daily life. Food safety goals aim at ensuring that food is not contaminated or poisoned during its transfer from the source to the user. The application of proper food safety principles is essential anytime when handling food and food-based products.