We’ve launched our FAQs answers page on Hygiene Food Safety for all frequently asked questions.
The topics include bacteria, food-poisoning, food hygiene and food safety.
Check out our page. If you don’t find the FAQs answers or questions your looking for, there’s a questions form you can fill in. We’d be happy to get this answers for you.
How Does Food Get Contaminated?
It takes several steps to get food from farm to fork. We call these steps, “The food production chain”.
Contamination can occur at any point along this chain during:
Who Is Most At Risk Of Getting Food Poisoning?
- Small children/babies are incredibly prone to food poisoning
- Pregnant moms
- The elderly
- And those that are immunocompromised, especially HIV infections and cancer patients.
This is because each person in these categories does in one way or another have a lower immune system than the general population.
How Common Is Food Poisoning?
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that 1 in 10 people worldwide, fall sick from food poisoning. Within that 10%, 420 000 people worldwide incur severe infections or complications from food poisoning and die from food poisoning each year.
In 2007 The Food Standards Agency (FSA) estimates that there are around 850,000 cases of food poisoning each year in the UK.
The FSA estimates that there are 500 deaths from food poisoning in the UK every year.
Foodborne illness, better known as the dreaded food poisoning, causes almost 50 million illnesses and 3,000 deaths annually in the United States.
What is Food Poisoning?
Food poisoning can be defined as an illness caused by consuming food or drink that has been contaminated, causing nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea.
Food-borne illness can be mild ranging from a “runny tummy” or stomach cramps to severe dehydration causing hospitalisation. Exposure to toxins from bacteria can even cause death.
What Are Bacteria?
There are 2 main viruses in food that are involved with food poisoning. Hepatitis A & Noroviruses. Although bacteria are the most common food poisoning organisms, viruses do play a role in food safety.
The hepatitis A virus is one of several types of hepatitis viruses that affect your liver’s ability to function. Hep A infections occur from consuming contaminated food or water, exactly the same way as bacteria. The main difference is, that the virus is contagious and you can get infected by having close contact with another person that is infected.
Noroviruses are the most common cause of acute gastroenteritis. This is more commonly known as the stomach flu or viral gastroenteritis. Noroviruses are also spread by consuming food and water that is contaminated. Noroviruses are highly contagious and anyone can get infected like flu.
Do You Wash Raw Chicken Before Cooking?
Infections in the kitchen can occur from a simple practice of washing chicken in a basin, during preparation and before cooking.
Campylobacter is able to survive in the droplets of water from the wash basin, meaning that this bacterium presents concerns during washing and defrosting practices, so much so that the international food safety specialists insist that you do not wash/rinse your chicken before cooking.
What is Botulism?
Botulism is a paralysing disease affecting the body’s nervous system that is caused by the ingestion of one of the most potent neurotoxins produced by Clostridium botulinum. This neurotoxin is among the most toxic substances known; even microscopic amounts can cause illness.