Food safety knowledge and practices of consumers in the U.S.A.
ABSTRACT Use of safe food handling practices in the home could reduce the number of foodborne illnesses. The objective of this project was to obtain baseline data on the safe food handling knowledge and practices of consumers to aid in the development of effective educational programmes. A food handling questionnaire was developed and completed by 426 Nebraskan respondents. Knowledge and practice questions were based on the most important contributory factors in reported foodborne illness outbreaks. Knowledge scores (correct responses) ranged from 2 to 29 with a mean of 20 ± 4. When compared with the knowledge score, the respondents' education level, where they lived and their sex were statistically significant. Almost all (96%) of the respondents stated that they practised safe food handling when persons were infected. Approximately half of the respondents indicated that they practised safe food handling when handling contaminated raw foods and using foods from unsafe sources. About 45% of the respondents inappropriately left foods at room temperature. One-third of the survey respondents improperly held hot foods. Cross-contamination was a concept understood by 75% of the respondents. Results indicate that food safety education should be targeted on specific groups who are less knowledgeable about safe food handling practices. Results also indicate that a number of respondents knew proper food handling concepts but did not put those concepts into practice. Therefore, increasing the adoption of safe food handling practices by consumers should become an important aspect for educators in food safety educational programmes.
- SourceAvailable from: Elena Faccio[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Effective food safety interventions implemented in schools should be an important way to reach children and to improve their knowledge and habits in the context of food handling and personal hygiene. However, few intervention programs of this kind have been implemented with young children, as the preferred groups are secondary school children, young adults and adults. Even though introducing children to new hygiene habits and offering them simplified knowledge based on experience might be effective, health intervention programs and evaluation methods must be adapted to the peculiarity of childhood learning abilities. This study provides an example of a health promotion campaign addressed at primary school students, with the aim of improving children’s knowledge, correcting habits in the context of food safety, and enhancing the children’s understanding of microorganisms and their functions. Children attending a program based on (1) mostly theoretical knowledge or (2) mostly practical information (with the scientific method of “learn by playing”) were evaluated before and after the intervention using drawings and semi structured interviews to test the intervention effectiveness. Data extracted from an analysis of 492 drawings and of 141 interviews showed that practical classes are more effective than theory classes. Data also show that children’s drawings could be used to simplify and consolidate the deep learning of scientific topics, and also to evaluate the successfulness of health promotion campaigns targeting young children. This should contribute to the amelioration of children’s awareness of hygiene and food contamination-related risks, leading to significant benefits for primary prevention of foodborne illness.Food Control 03/2013; 33(2):320-329. · 2.74 Impact Factor
- [show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The objective was to review the literature related to the risk of salmonellosis from chicken consumed in private homes in Canada. The pathway of concern was retail-to-consumption at private homes due to the direct link between this pathway and public health. A qualitative review was conducted by searching Canadian governmental agencies' webpages, published peer-reviewed journals, and by contacting experts in the field. Overall, with the data available, estimating risk from Salmonella in chicken breasts using only Canadian information was limited. Enumeration data for Salmonella in retail raw chicken at different regions across Canada are needed to be able to generalize the risk of salmonellosis in the Canadian population. Few Canadian surveys were found to describe consumers' food safety behaviors at Canadians' private homes. Observational designs to study food safety practices and Canadian consumers' behavior in private kitchens are needed to ensure that consumer behavior is consistent with consumer perceptions of their behavior. The results of such studies will give valuable input for designing educational programs needed to increase awareness of safe food handling practices by Canadian consumers when preparing food at their homes.Critical reviews in food science and nutrition 01/2013; 53(7):694-705. · 3.73 Impact Factor
- [show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Purpose – The International Scientific Forum on Home Hygiene's (IFH) approach to infectious disease prevention is “targeted hygiene”, which means identifying the routes of transmission of infection in the home and community, and targeting hygiene measures at “critical points” (CPs) to break the chain of transmission. This paper aims to identify and prioritise CPs in the home kitchen environment during food preparation in order to inform food safety campaigns. Design/methodology/approach – This study involved: filming participants (n=60) while they prepared a meal according to a specified recipe (30 beef/salad burgers and 30 chicken salads); swabbing key potential contamination sites in the participant's kitchen for microbiological testing; sampling the meat and salad components of the cooked meal for microbiological testing; visual inspection and temperature check of the meat after cooking; and administering a survey of knowledge, attitudes and demographic factors. Findings – This study has identified the critical points (CPs) during domestic food preparation as: CP1: correct cooking practices; CP2: prevention of cross-contamination; and CP3: correct food storage practices. Statistically significant links were found between food safety knowledge and behaviour as well as between food safety attitudes and demographic factors. Originality/value – This is the first study to link all aspects of observed consumer food safety practices in the home to food safety knowledge, attitudes, perceptions, psychosocial and demographic factors to identify these CPs.British Food Journal 01/2011; 113(6):766-783. · 0.61 Impact Factor