Vol 1 No 1 - Hygiene and food safety in a butchery are critically important. As ‘food premises’, butcheries are subject to all standards and regulations in the Health Act, and specifically the Government Notice No. R918 “Regulations Governing General Hygiene Requirements for Food Premises and the Transport of Food”. In addition, the Meat Safety Act, which deals with deboning plants, would apply to larger wholesalers or butchers attached to abattoirs, and to abattoirs wishing to export meat.
These are mandatory standards for butcheries in terms of hygiene and food safety are not the only legislation that applies. For example, there are regulations relating to meat quality and grading, labelling legislation under the Foodstuffs, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Act which deals with food ingredients and the occupational health and safety requirements for employees, as well as regulations governing exporting.
There are also several voluntary standards that address the legal requirements. The major retailers have their own food safety and quality standards, and the South African national standards include SABS 049:2001 for food hygiene requirements and SANS 10330:2007 for a HACCP system. A butcher can choose to implement these requirements and apply for a third party audit by a company such as the SABS.
Vol 1 No 2 - Involved in the fight to ensure flawless and reproducible hygienic conditions are three mutually dependent factors: safety, shelf-life and cost. Although hygiene considerations initially require investment and generally necessitate extra planning when setting up new production facilities, such efforts ultimately have a positive impact on the bottom line.
If such issues are taken into account early enough, completely cost-neutral solutions can be implemented. Butchers, bakers and other food processors should engage the services of professional hygiene and food safety professionals to ensure they remain at the cutting edge of the latest technological advances in equipment, cleaning materials and hygiene practices.
Vol 1 No 3 - Choosing the right work wear for your staff involves more than just getting a good price, particularly when adhering to HACCP standards. Fortunately there are some comprehensive solutions that can contain costs while ensuring absolute hygiene and food safety. Slip resistant and safety shoes, as well as garments from quality fabric, offering maximum coverage, without fluff and design elements where pathogens and other contaminants could gather, are essential in ensuring functionality, comfort, absolute hygiene, and endurance through frequent washing. The laundry process must include sterilisation to prevent re-contamination, eliminate any pathogens that might survive the laundry process, and leave no laundry chemical residues.
Considering all these factors, butchers, bakers and other food manufacturers are well advised to partner with a reputable company that will not only be able to supply the right work wear, but can also advise and assist with the repairs, replacements and laundry issues to manage costs.
There are suppliers who can assist with the setting up of an in-house laundry facility with the right equipment and the right chemicals as well as suppliers to whom the entire operation, from selecting the right garments to caring for the work wear and repairing and replacing the garments where necessary, can be outsourced.
Vol 1 No 6 - Keeping up with ever changing food safety regulations and ensuring personal hygiene in your business every day may seem like a daunting task. It includes hand washing, wearing hairnets, aprons, boots and gloves, and making sure that all clothing and equipment worn and used is cleaned and stored effectively to minimise the risk of contamination. However, by harnessing the solutions and expertise available from the specialists in this field, maintaining personal hygiene to ensure absolute food safety can be both easy and cost-effective.
From head to toe, there are solutions to help maintain the highest standard of personal hygiene, while improved and innovative equipment is becoming readily available to help personnel effectively and efficiently carry out and adhere to hygiene and food safety procedures.