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Basics for vendors
Home ALLERGENS Streetfood 10 Rules Food handlers

 

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THE ROLE OF STREET FOOD VENDORS/HANDLERS

IN PREVENTING FOOBORNE DISEASES

(FOOD POISONING)

WHAT IS STREET FOOD? 

“Street foods are ready-to-eat foods and beverages prepared and or sold by vendors and hawkers, especially in streets and other similar places for immediate consumption or consumption at a later stage without further processing or preparation.”

 Everyday food is served to thousands of people by street food vendors.  The thousands of people who purchase street foods depend on the food vendors or handlers to protect their health.  Thus the good health of the customers is literally in the hands of the food vendor or handler.  The customer trusts you. 

WHAT CAUSES FOOD POISONING? 

 Food poisoning is caused by germs such as bacteria which are everywhere in raw or uncooked food, animals and man, unsafe water, dirty utensils, equipment and working surfaces. Main symptoms of food poisoning are usually diarrhoea, vomiting, nausea and stomach pain. 

WHAT ARE BACTERIA? 

Bacteria are small living organisms that you cannot see with your own eyes. There are three types of bacteria: useful ones for making cheese and yoghurt, spoilage ones and harmful disease-causing ones. Here we are concerned with the disease-causing bacteria which can multiply at room (warm) temperature into millions in just a few hours (for example, 1 bacterium can multiply and produce up to 17 million bacteria in just 8 hours).
 

HOW DO BACTERIA GROW? 

Bacteria require food, moisture, warmth and time to grow and multiply.  The food  that we eat also support bacterial growth includes: 

·        Meat and chicken stews and meat products (meat pies and sausages);and

·        Milk, cream, eggs and egg products (e.g mayonnaise and egg sandwiches)

·        Rice, pap and gravy 

The above foods require handling in a hygienic manner, at the right temperature and proper cooking.  

HOW DO YOU AVOID BACTERIA TO GROW AND MULTIPLY? 

Cook food thoroughly and keep it hot until served. Do not keep cooked food at room temperature for more than 3 hours.

WHAT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TOWARDS YOUR CUSTOMERS? 

Your customers believe and trust that street food vendors produce tasty, wholesome and safe food. Therefore, you must not produce food containing harmful bacteria (germs) which will make your customers sick.  

BAD BUSINESS 

Dirty food preparation end with bad food and customers become sick with food poisoning. Remember when customers become sick they stay away and you loose business. 

GOOD BUSINESS 

Well-prepared food in a clean environment is good business. Customers keep coming back.  New and regular customers is what you want – this means more business. Keep the food you prepare and sell wholesome and safe.
 

WAYS TO PREVENT FOODBORNE DISEASES (FOOD POISONING) 

1.            THROUGH FOOD HYGIENE 

Proper handling, storing, preparing and cooking will prevent foodborne disease. 

1.1  Keep raw and cooked food separate.  Especially raw meat/poultry and cooked meat/poultry.

WHY:              Raw food can spread bacteria to other foods that will be eaten without further cooking. 

1.2  Thaw frozen poultry/meat thoroughly before cooking.

WHYThorough thawing is essential if the center of the food is to reach the right temperature required to kill bacteria during cooking.

1.3  Cook food thoroughly, making sure that it boils (70°C) for more than 10 minutes.

WHY:    This is necessary to kill most of the bacteria. 

1.4  Food should not be reheated more than once; only the portion of the food to be served should be reheated to a minimum of 70°C (steaming hot).

     WHY:  To make sure that all bacteria that might have multiplied   are        killed.

 

1.5  Ready-to-eat foods intended for continuous serving should be kept at the following temperatures:

·        Food served hot = 65°C or above, by keeping it on the stove or fire

·         Food served cold = 10°C or below, by using cool boxes and ice

WHY:        Not to allow food kept at ambient temperatures (danger zone), otherwise bacteria will grow.    

1.6  Keep food covered all the time.

WHY:            To protect food against contamination by rodents, insects, dust, etc. 

1.7  Avoid preparing food too far in advance. (reheat food properly after at least every 3 hours)

WHY:            To reduce the risk of bacterial growth if food is left standing at ambient temperatures for a long time before serving. 

1.8  Ready-to-eat food should not be handled with bare hands. Use clean tongs, forks or spoons.

WHY:            To reduce the risk of contamination.
 

2.            THROUGH PERSONAL HYGIENE 

Personal hygiene is the action taken to ensure that food is handled, stored, prepared and served in such a manner as to prevent contamination of food. 

2.1  If sick (with diarrhoea or cough) DO NOT HANDLE FOOD!

WHY:            You may contaminate food. 

2.2  Wear clean protective clothing including cap or hair net over the head

WHY:            Your own clothes may carry bacteria. 

2.3  Wash your hands:

bullet Before entering the food area;
bullet After using the toilet;
bullet Before and after touching food, especially when it is still raw;
bullet After coughing, sneezing into your hands/handkerchief;
bullet After touching your face or hair;
bullet After handling dirt or refuse

WHY:        There are many bacteria on the surfaces of your skin. Your hands can pick bacteria from other contaminated surfaces.  

2.4  Keep cuts, sores, and boils covered with a moisture proof dressing and/ or stop handling food.

WHY:        Cuts, sores, boils are often infected with bacteria and thus cause risks of contaminating food. 

2.5  Refrain touching your nose, coughing or sneezing near food or utensils.

WHY:            You may add your own bacteria to the food. 

2.6  Avoid touching those parts of dishes or cutlery that come into contact with food.

WHY:            To reduce the chance of contamination. 

2.7  Keep fingernails short, clean.  Do not apply nail varnish.

WHY:        Bacteria can collect beneath long nails and pass into the food.  Varnish can enter food. 

2.8  Avoid wearing hand jewellery.

WHY:            Bacteria can collect on these items. 

2.9  Do not smoke while handling food.

WHY:      You may contaminate food.

3.            THROUGH ENVIRONMENTAL HYGIENE (A CLEAN ENVIRONMENT) 

A clean environment requires clean water, access to toilets, waste water disposal system and refuse storage and removal. 

3.1  Use hot water and soap to clean dishes and utensils.

    WHY:            Dishes and utensils may have become contaminated by bacteria.
 

3.2  Change water in the washing basins frequently depending how dirty it looks.

WHY:            To avoid water becoming contaminated. 

3.3  Use clean dish towel to dry dishes and utensils.

WHY:            Dirty dish towels spread dirt and bacteria. 

3.4  Keep dirty dishes away from clean ones and food.

WHY:            To avoid cross contamination. 

3.5  Always ensure the workplace is clean before preparing food.

WHY:        Thorough cleaning is necessary to kill any Bacteria present on the working tables etc. 

3.6  Any surfaces such s equipment that have been in contact with raw food must be cleaned at once.

WHY:            To avoid the risk of contamination 

3.7  Use clean wiping cloth for tables.

WHY:            Dirty clothes spread bacteria. 

3.8  Get rid of rodents and flies.

WHY:            Rodents and flies carry bacteria. 

3.9  Have plenty of light in the food preparing and cooking area.

WHY:            So that you may notice dirt. 

3.10 Get rid of all waste or keep covered until disposed of.

WHY:            Filth breed bacteria.

3.11 Keep floor, tables-the whole premises clean all the time.

WHY:          Bacteria do not like clean places.

ALWAYS REMEMBER:

CLEANLINESS IS NEXT TO GODLINESS!

 

LIST OF REGULATIONS PUBLISHED UNDER THE FOODSTUFFS, COSMETICS AND DISINFECTANTS ACT, 1772 (ACT 54 OF 1972)

 

No. R. 2627 - 12 December 1986

REGULATIONS : JAM, CONSERVE, MARMALADE AND JELLY

 

No. R. 2527 - 13 November 1987

REGULATIONS : GOVERNING EMULSIFIERS, STABILISERS AND THICKENERS AND THE AMOUNTS THEREOF THAT FOODSTUFFS MAY CONTAIN

 

No. R. 313 - 16 February 1990

REGULATIONS : GOVERNING TOLERANCES FOR FUNGUS-PRODUCED TOXINS IN FOODSTUFFS

 

No. R. 952 – 6 August 1999

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO PERISHABLE FOODSTUFFS

Definition

Declaration of certain perishable foodstuffs

 

No. R. 1931 - 17 August 1990

REGULATIONS : GOVERNING RADIO ACTIVITY IN FOODSTUFFS

TABLE

 

No. R. 2486 - 26 October 1990

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO BAKING POWDER AND CHEMICAL LEAVENING SUBSTANCES

 

No. R. 2718 - 23 November 1990

REGULATIONS : GOVERNING THE COMPOSITION AND LABELLING OF RAW BOEREWORS, RAW SPECIES SAUSAGE AND RAW MIXED SPECIES SAUSAGE

 

No. R. 2554 - 25 October 1991

REGULATIONS : PROHIBITING GUARGUM AS A FOODSTUFF

 

No. R. 3128 - 20 December 1991

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO THE USE OF SWEETENERS IN FOODSTUFFS

 


 

No. R. 1809 - 3 July 1992

REGULATIONS : GOVERNING THE MAXIMUM LIMITS FOR VETERINARY MEDICINE AND STOCK REMEDY RESIDUES THAT MAY BEPRESENT IN FOODSTUFFS

 

No. R. 1468 - 13 August 1993

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO HERBS AND SPICES

 

 

No. R. 2034 - 29 October 1993

REGULATlONS : GOVERNING THE LABELLING AND ADVERTISING OF FOODSTUFFS

 

No. R. 246 - 11 February 1994

REGULATIONS : GOVERNING THE MAXIMUM LIMITS FOR PESTICIDE RESIDUES THAT MAY BE PRESENT IN FOODSTUFFS

 

No. R. 1518 - 9 September 1994

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO METALS IN FOODSTUFFS

 

No. R. 996 - 7 July 1995

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO SALT

 

No. R. 382 - 8 March 1996

REGULATIONS : ENFORCEMENT BY LOCAL AUTHORITIES

 

No. R. 1008 - 21 June 1996

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO FOOD COLOURANTS

 

No. R. 1316 - 16 August 1996

REGULATIONS : RELATING TO EDIBLE FATS AND OILS

 

No. R. 692 - 16 May 1997

REGULATIONS : GOVERNING MICROBIOLOGICAL STANDARDS FOR

FOODSTUFFS AND RELATED MATTERS

 

No. R. 2507/1982

REGULATIONS : ANTI-CAKING AGENTS – AMOUNTS THAT MAY BE USED IN FOODSTUFFS

 

No. R. 965/1977

REGULATIONS : PRESERVATIVES AND ANTIOXIDANTS

 

No. R. 1600/1983

REGULATIONS : IRRADIATED FOODSTUFFS

 


 

No. R. 2162/1973

REGULATIONS : DUTIES OF INSPECTORS AND ANALYSTS

 

No. R. 1769/1985

REGULATIONS : SOFT DRINKS

 

No. R. 92/1986

REGULATIONS : MAYONNAISE AND OTHER SALAD DRESSINGS

 

No. R. 1555/1997

REGULATIONS : MILK AND DAIRY PRODUCTS

 

No. R. 2839/1979

REGULATIONS : ENRICHMENT OF MAIZE MEAL

 

No. R. 230/1977

REGULATIONS : MINERAL HYDROCARBONS IN FOODSTUFFS

 

NO. R. 2064/1973

REGULATIONS : SEA FOOD

 

No. R. 1466/1987

REGULATIONS : TOLERANCES FOR CERTAIN SEEDS IN CERTAIN AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS

 

No. R. 2417/1987

REGULATIONS : USE OF CERTAIN FOOD ADDITIVES IN CERTAIN WHEATEN AND RYE PRODUCTS

 

No. R. 2870/1981

REGULATIONS : SUBSTANCES IN WINE, OTHER FERMENTED BEVERAGES AND SPIRITS – ADDITIVES, AMOUNTS AND TOLERANCES

 

No. R. 115/1986

REGULATIONS : ACIDS, BASES AND SALTS – THE AMOUNTS THEREOF THAT FOODSTUFFS MAY CONTAIN

 

No. R. 219/1975

REGULATIONS : RESTRICTION ON THE SALE OF FOOD ADDITIVES CONTAINING NITRITE AND/OR NITRATE AND OTHER SUBSTANCES

 

No. R. 2037/1975

REGULATIONS : MANUFACTURED OR PROCESSED MEAT PRODUCTS

 

No. R. 1130/1984

REGULATIONS : FOODSTUFFS FOR INFANTS, YOUNG CHILDREN AND CHILDREN

 

No. 575 - 28 March 1930

REGULATIONS UNDER THE FOOD, DRUGS AND DISINFECTANTS ACT


 

 

 

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