What do you consider to be important to your company culture? Is it your values, your production systems, your team, your history? Is it your food safety activities?
No matter what else you put in the culture mix, if you’re a food producer, food safety should be at the top of your list.
‘Food safety culture’ in a business is how everyone – owners, managers, employees – thinks and acts in their daily job ensure the food they make or serve is safe. It’s about pride in producing safe food every time and recognising that a good quality product must be safe to eat.
Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has created a great online resource, filled with tools and resources to help you on your food safety journey. Click here to see what’s available.
The website includes a three-step process for food safety called Know: Do: Follow through, which includes questionnaires and checklists to assess business performance.
Why is it important?
A good food safety culture can protect:
- Consumers from foodborne illness
- Your brand’s reputation
- Your business from financial loss.
- 1 million cases of foodborne illness (each year) with contaminated food causing about 30,800 hospitalisations and 76 deaths.
- 70 food recalls a year, mostly due to contamination by disease-causing microorganisms, or allergens that were not declared on the label.
- Unsafe food can be linked to poor hygiene practices or mistakes by people handling food. This can occur, even when people are trained and businesses are inspected and audited.