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Articles by Section - Department: Food Service and Retail

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Departments: Overcome Communication Barriers to Food Safety

Tailor employee training to avoid hazards stemming from language.

Departments: All Hands on Deck

An observational study conducted by the CDC that 8.6 hand washes by restaurant staff per employee hour were required to comply with the FDA’s Model Food Code.1 Consensus among both operators and regulators is that that is never going to happen. However, the study’s results beg the question: If 8.6 is the ideal safe level, what is the risk when hand washing frequency is, on average, 0.5 times per employee hour? Based on foodborne illness data and the increasing frequency of shuttered...

Departments: Get a Handle on Allergens

More than 160 foods can cause allergic reactions, and it is estimated that 5 million to 12 million Americans suffer from food allergies. This corresponds to 4% to 8% of children and 1% to 3% of adults. An allergic reaction to food occurs when a person’s immune system attacks a food substance, usually a protein. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) estimates that 30,000 emergency room visits, 2,000 hospitalizations, and 150 deaths occur from food-related anaphylaxis annually.1 At present there...

Departments: The 100% Solution to Worker Testing

Employee training has always posed challenges for food companies. Consider language, for example. English may be a second language for many employees, which raises the issue of worker comprehension. Do employees really understand the concepts and procedures being taught, particularly the importance of product safety?

Departments: Novel Approaches to Pathogen Control

A series of recent incidents involving pathogens in peanut butter, ground beef, and chicken products has forced the food industry to recognize the continuing need for technological means of ensuring the biological integrity of food supplies.

Departments: Cross-Contamination Conundrum

In today’s fast-paced world, we often don’t stop to think that the meal we’re eating may be our last. It’s not a pleasant thought and it is easier to dismiss the notion as something that happens to other people in a far-off place. However, each year it is a reality for 5,200 Americans and their families.

Departments: Critical Sanitation Issues in Food Service

This is the first in a two-part series. Part two, which will appear in our December/January issue, will focus on the targets for pathogen and spoilage microbes in the food contact zones.

Departments: Clarity is Key to Packaging

Retail outlets, from large supermarket chains to small corner shops, are becoming more and more like walk in/walk out restaurants, with convenience foods, sandwiches, and snacks providing a high proportion of turnover. There are many materials available for the plastic containers used in food packaging for these retail outlets, each with its own performance characteristics.

Departments: COOL Compliance Making You Sweat?

While debate and expectation regarding country of origin labeling (COOL) legislation have been around for many years, the recent veto override of the 2008 Farm Bill has created a renewed sense of urgency among food retailers, operators, and distributors who need to become compliant. That’s because the bill included a provision reinstating the mandatory September 30 COOL deadline for fresh produce and meat products.

Departments: Get the Edge in the Race for Food Quality Gold

Cutting food service costs while maintaining high food quality, optimum customer service, and happy employees is a goal of nearly every food service establishment, from restaurants to retirement communities. Recently, Legacy Retirement Communities, in Lincoln, Neb., decided this was a goal they were ready to pursue. Now, with the guidance of national dining consultants Don Miller and Associates, Legacy’s dining services have cut costs by six figures, transformed a weekly resident pre-order approach...

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June/July 2014

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