Hand washing: recommended good practice

All businesses serving or preparing food must ensure that they comply with food safety regulations. Thorough hand washing seems like a simple requirement, but its importance can be overlooked, and a failure to follow good practice can result in the contamination of food stuffs. Harmful bacteria can easily be transferred from hands to food, equipment or work surfaces.
In order to ensure that members of staff are aware of the risks involved, food safety training should be provided. Anyone running a business serving or preparing food should make sure that all members of staff wash their hands:
• Before they enter any food preparation areas, either before work or after breaks or trips to the toilet.
• Before food preparation.
• After working with raw food; this is especially important when touching raw poultry, meat or eggs.
• After touching food waste or emptying bins.
• After cleaning the food preparation area.
• After blowing their nose.
Staff should also be reminded that hands should be properly dried with a clean towel, because damp or wet hands are more likely to transfer bacteria.
These recommendations may seem like common sense, but it is important to remind those working with food of their importance.