When preparing food in your kitchen or restaurant it is essential that you take care when handling raw meat and other foodstuffs. According to the Food Standards Agency (FSA), there are an estimated 5.5 million cases of food poisoning each year in the UK.
An article on the BBC website states that one of the most common causes of food poisoning is cross contamination when preparing uncooked meat near salads and vegetables. One easy way to limit this is to buy latex, rubber, or non-latex gloves . These can be used in the workplace or at home for a variety of tasks, but you should also continue to wash your hands and lower arms to prevent bacteria being transferred to the gloves.
Washing your hands
There are many different types of hand soap available on the market, but just washing and drying your hands is not always enough. Wearing gloves while preparing different types of food can reduce the chances of passing on the harmful bacteria, viruses or chemicals that washing cannot remove. It is still possible to pass on these problems when wearing gloves but the risks can be drastically reduced if hygiene practices are maintained and the correct gloves are used.
Protecting you and others
The Huffington Post has an article regarding the dangers of food or water borne diseases around the world. The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates there were 582 million cases of food born enteric diseases (gut related bacteria) around the world, resulting in 351,000 deaths. These statistics make it even more important that you protect yourself and others from contaminated food. The use of colour-coded gloves makes them easier to distinguish and manage; it will be necessary for you to change these on a regular basis to ensure that they aren’t used for more than one job.
Cooking for a large party
If you have a party or wedding planned and decide that you are going to do the catering yourself, it’s important that you make sure you look after the health of your guests. Investing in some disposable gloves for use while preparing the food and for serving will reduce the chances of contamination. If you’re not used to preparing food for large groups make sure you carry out some research before you begin. Keeping the food at the right temperature is as important as making sure everything is clean.
Allergies and new regulations
If you are serving unpackaged food to the public new legislation regarding allergies came into effect on 13/12/2014. The EU Food information for Consumers Regulation 1169/2011 will mean that all deli counters, sandwich bars and bakeries will have to display ingredients and possible allergy information for the public’s safety. This new law will mean that all catering staff will have to have training, which will teach them how to manage food hygiene and food safety standards. The use of gloves when handling foods such as fish, raw meats or foods that contain dairy products or nuts is essential. These ingredients can all lead to possible allergic reactions.