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Dry food storage Your dry store should be cool, dry, clean and ventilated, an example of foods stored in these conditions would be; rice, flour, tin food, and spices. All food should be stored on shelves and kept off the floor at all times to minimise the risk of pests and contamination. Most dry foods have a long shelf life but you should always read the manufacturer’s instructions. Food poisoning from canned foods is rare, however, should the can show visible signs of rusting or burst at either end then they should be disposed of and always check use by date before use.

Food handlers are legally obligated to avoid exposing food to the risk of contamination, report to the supervisor if suffering from upset stomachs, infected wounds, colds and coughs. Keep themselves and their clothing clean and personal protective equipment worn when appropriate.

A premises where it is intended that food be prepared for public consumption should be: • Registered with the relevant local authority before the business can open • Kept well maintained and clean and tidy at all times • Waste should be stored and disposed of correctly • Floors, walls and food preparation areas should be well maintained and easily cleaned • Adequately supplied with clean water, drainage, well lit and well ventilated • Provided with hot and cold water or other means for cleaning equipment • Adequate toilet and hand washing facilities for employees (should be placed away from food preparation areas) • Have a pest management system in place.

How can we define Food Poisoning? The condition is caused by the ingestion of contaminated food or drink in which the main symptoms are usually diarrhoea and vomiting, either separately or together often accompanied by stomach pains and nausea. Food poisoning can be extremely unpleasant and although not usually life threatening there are groups which tend to be more at risk of serious illness and even death. These groups are; infants, pregnant women, elderly people, and those with weakened immunity.

Contamination of Food A hazard may be: Biological (Bacteria, toxins and viruses) Bacteria are living small organisms – 25,000 could quite easily be accommodated on the point of a needle and are by far the most common cause of food poisoning today. Viruses are tiny particles, smaller than bacteria and require the use of a microscope to identify them. They only grow in living tissue and therefore cannot grow in food. The same practices in virus management can also be applied to manage bacteria.

Chemical (Cleaning Chemicals and Insecticides) Occasionally other poisons cause problems in food. Chemical poisons such as insectides can find there way into the food and toxic metal may enter the food while being processed. Poisonous plants including toadstools and poisonous toxins

42  The Bangladesh Cuisine

produced by moulds can cause illnesses if eaten. Under certain weather conditions shellfish accumulate toxins from algae (which grows in sea water).

Physical (Undesirable substances in food) Reports of ‘foreign bodies’ in food such as pests can cause huge amounts of publicity, physical hazards in the main have the advantage of being easy to spot and therefore it is not normal that they cause any harm. Glass is obviously the exception here and has the potential to be very harmful.

Food Safety Management System The main piece of legislation that is in place to protect the consumer is the Food Safety Act 1990; this act is an umbrella for ministers to make regulations in an efficient manner. The majority of legislation in the UK that concerns food safety is now set out by the European Union. regulations

were introduced that

In January 2006 new extended


responsibilities of all food handlers, from farm all the way through to the plate.

These regulations include: The owner of the food business is made responsible for ensuring a food handler has received sufficient training in food hygiene so that all tasks can be carried out safely, all food businesses are required to have a food safety management system based on the principles of HACCP, and to ensure that management

systems are

implemented effectively and that the person responsible has the appropriate training and support.

Daily Temperature Practice Reminder for Food Handlers

Fridge or walk in chillier recommended temperature:1°C - 4°C Freezer temperature: 18°C Cooked food left outside at room temperature must be used: within two hours Rice Cooling: 1½ of cooking – The process is to portion in a small bowl then submerge under cold water till cold. To defrost place covered food: 10°C - 15°C, in either the dry store or cold rooms or place under cold running water Probe check: boiling water or in ice water Ambient temperature: 20°C Body temp: 37°C Sanitise for: chopping board, knife and surfaces use a food safe sanitise spray and leave for at least five minutes or refer to the product guidance Danger Zone: 5°C - 63°C for bacterial growth in foods Re-heating food must be: 75°C and above Hotplate Temperature: 63°C or above Washing up temperature: 50°C Washing up disinfection: 82°C up to ½ minute Boiling (sterilising): 100°C All food must be covered. Recommended not to use cooked food after three days. Update your SFBB diary daily.

By Oli Khan BCA Vice President Curry & Tandoori | Volume 11 | December 2011

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