Every food business operator must protect consumers from risk. If food safety and hygiene standards are not followed, it could result in foodborne illnesses and harsh penalties for the food business owners. To avoid such problems, the World Health Organization (WHO) prioritizes Food Safety and Hygiene. According to the WHO (World Health Organization), these 5 basic Food Safety Standards must be followed by each FBO’s:
- Prevent pathogen contamination of food.
- Separate raw and cooked foods to avoid contamination of cooked food.
- Cook food for the right amount of time and at the right temperature to kill pathogens.
- Food should be stored at the correct temperature according to the requirements.
- Use of safe raw materials and clean water
The Food Safety and Hygiene Norms should be followed by any company that handles, processes, manufactures, packages, stores, or distributes food. It is the responsibility of the food business operator and everyone who handles food in the food business to ensure that general hygienic and clean practices are followed. Any food business owner or operator should take measures to ensure food safety. These techniques ensure that Food Safety and Standard Regulations are maintained.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India develops food hygiene regulations in India. It is a premium organization run by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare committed to Food Safety and Hygiene Requirements in India. Under the Food Safety and Standards (Licensing and Registration of Food Businesses) Regulations, 2011 here’s a list of requirements on Hygienic and Sanitary Practices that must be practiced by all food business operators:
Food Safety and Standards Regulations in India are as follow:
1.Location and neighborhood of the food establishment: According to the FSSAI Food and Safety Guidelines, the food enterprise should preferably be located away from the air contamination and industrial practices that can pollute the food with harmful odors, fumes, dust, smoke, chemical waste, and contaminants. These contaminants have the potential to contaminate food areas that are vulnerable to germ infestation or waste. It is important to remember that food outlet manufacturing facilities must not have direct access to any residential area. In the case of meat and meat products, the location of the establishment is also relevant. A food business operator dealing in meat and meat products must assure that the establishment is linked to a meat market and is separate from vegetables, fish, and other food products to get the FSSAI License.
2.Layout and design of food establishment: Common hygienic and sanitary practices include keeping the food establishment’s floors, ceilings, and walls in good condition, free of damage and plaster. To keep pests and rodents out of the establishment, good pest control measures should be implemented. No one shall be permitted to sell any item inside the food manufacturing unit’s premises that is not effectively isolated from the urinal, sullage, or foul matter storage area, or drain.
3. Facilities: Water storage systems must be sufficient to assure that food item are not contaminated. Clean water must be used as an ingredient in cooking and processing. Facilities for utensil cleaning, raw material washing, drainage, and waste disposal should be available. To get a Food License, every food business operator must build personal facilities and toilets, as well as air quality, ventilation, and lighting.
4.Equipment and Containers: According to food safety standards, all containers used by a food establishment must be in good working order and sanitary conditions. Corrosion-resistant materials should be used. The primary goal is to protect the food from contaminants such as dust, dirt, flies, and insects. To meet Food Safety and Hygiene Requirements, all types of equipment must be cleaned and disinfected properly.
5.Food operations and controls: The Food Hygiene System must ensure that the food establishment purchases raw materials with caution. The expiration or use-by date should be double-checked. Temperatures for high-risk food items, such as milk, frozen food, and meat, must be preserved to ensure that raw materials and food items are stored safely.
6.Personal Hygiene: Food Safety and Hygiene Norms ensures the personal cleanliness and sanitation of the food handlers. Food safety and hygiene requirements, such as protective clothing, a head covering, a face mask, gloves, and necessary footwear, must be given to all food handlers. These requirements must also apply to those who visit food establishments. In addition, all food handlers must have routine health checkups. Any illness or disease that can be transmitted by food is potentially dangerous. Disease carriers must not be permitted in food establishments.
7.Sanitation and maintenance of establishment premises: To meet with Food Safety and Standards Rules, proper cleaning and maintenance facilities, as well as pest control systems, must be in effect. Every food establishment must have a Food Hygiene System in place that specifies the cleaning and sanitation procedures. To ensure food hygiene and sanitation, specific cleaning schedules and procedures must be developed. In addition, insect infestations must be addressed immediately. While pest control is essential, care must be taken to ensure that food quality is not harmed.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India conducts successful periodic evaluations of training efficacy and knowledge of safety requirements, as well as testing Food Safety and Hygiene Requirements.
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