Personal Hygiene in the Catering and Hotel Industry

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Personal Hygiene:

Principles of Personal Hygiene:

In any food establishments, food handlers are either the first line of defense or the cause for the need for defense. This is because most types of foods can be contaminated and it is the responsibility of the food handler to ensure the safety of the consumers by eliminating or minimizing the contamination to safer levels for consumption. How to lessen, prevent, and eliminate contamination that causes food borne illness will be the focus of the study. Personal hygiene controls include all precautions taken by food handlers to protect food from contamination and to reduce the risk of food poisoning and food borne illness. If good personal hygiene practices are not applied, food may be exposed to the risk of contamination. You need to have rules and procedures in place to ensure that your Personal Hygiene is effectively managed. Some personal Hygiene controls for use in a food business are as below:

1. Food Hygiene / Safety Management Policy:
A food safety policy must be in place, communicated and implemented fully. Personal Hygiene should be part of the food safety management policy / system. This helps to ensure that food handlers are aware and conscious of their roles and responsibilities and the practices that they are expected to follow while at work.

2. Staff Interviewing, Selection / Hiring / Pre and Post Employment Medical Screening Any person who is to be recruited as a food handler should undertake a medical examination at an approved medical centre and has to be certified that he/she is fit to work as a food handler. The person should acquire a valid Health Card / Occupational Health Card from Dubai Municipality authorizing him/her to work as a food handler. Any food handler who is suspected or diagnosed to be diseased, a carrier of, or in contact with another person suffering from an infectious or communicable disease, must be excluded from any operation which may be expected to result in food contamination. The person shall not:

• Engage in the handling of food, which includes transportation, preparation, storing, serving and packing of food. • Handle any vessel, receptacle, utensil, packaging or any instrument that comes into contact with food, whether for cleaning or any other purposes. Be allowed to work or resume work, unless that person produces a medical clearance certificate that he/she is fit for the work to be undertaken. Any diseased personnel shall report such health conditions to their supervisors. The conditions that must be reported to the management include: Jaundice , Diarrhea, Vomiting, Sore throat & fever, Skin infections, skin disorders such as boils, infected wounds , infection/skin disorders of the face, hands or forearms, flu, coughing, infections of mouth, throat, ears or eyes, pus-containing discharges from the eyes, ears, nose or mouth/gums and Fever It is also requirement from the authorities that every food handlers should go annual medical checkup.

3. Personal Cleanliness.
Hair should be tied back and preferably covered.
Cuts and sores should be covered with a Blue waterproof dressing. Hands are to be washed thoroughly, before starting work, before handling food, after using the toilet, after handling raw foods or waste, after every break, after eating and drinking, after cleaning, and after blowing your nose .Hair should be tied back and preferably covered. Food handlers should not spit, sneeze or cough over neither food nor smoke in a food preparation area Jewelry should be kept to a minimum when preparing and handling food '' a plain wedding. Ring and sleeper earrings are acceptable.

4. Protective Clothing :
Protective Clothing: All staff working in the food preparation area must wear suitable, clean clothing. Clothing must be kept clean and should be changed and laundered regularly in order to protect the food you are preparing.

5. Reporting Illness/Exclusion and Return to Work :
There is a...
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