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Importance of Food Safety Training

8 March 2024

Importance of food safety training in any food handling business is significant. Both consumers and those working in the hospitality and retail sectors are becoming more aware of the importance of food safety and implementation of HACCP based procedures. Part of the reason for this is when there is an incident of food poisoning, a large number of people may be affected resulting in serious legal issues, negative publicity and loss of livelihood. Owing to this, some businesses might be forced to close down.


Why is it Important to Train People in Safe Food Handling

It is the legal responsibility of everyone involved in the food sector to carry out their food-related activities in a hygienic manner. This applies to all food handling areas. In summary, these include food service, food wholesaling, food retailing and food processing. Each year there are 4000 – 5000 reported cases of food poisoning in the island of Ireland. However, the actual figure may be considerably higher than this. This is owing to many people with mild symptoms do not report these symptoms. To illustrate, the FSAI report from 2022 states that there were 4,058 complaints from consumers in 2022. About 1,200 were relating to unfit food and more than 1,100 each due to poor hygiene standards and suspected food poisoning. In other words, food poisoning concerns almost doubled from the 622 received in 2021.

Food poisoning, also called foodborne illness, is illness caused by eating contaminated food. Infectious organisms, including bacteria, viruses and parasites, or their toxins are the most common causes of food poisoning. Infectious organisms or their toxins can contaminate food at any point of processing or production.

To learn more about food poisoning and how to prevent it, the eLearn Safety has developed fully online food safety courses. These courses are designed to introduce participants to food safety and hygiene issues. All courses are based on the training criteria set down by the Food Safety Authority of Ireland’s Guide to Food Safety Training at appropriate level.

On completion of this food safety training course, participants will be able to understand their requirements under Irish food safety legislation as well as following best work practices.


Consequences of Poor Food Handling Practices

Food poisoning symptoms, which can start within hours of eating contaminated food, often include nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. Most often, food poisoning is mild and resolves without treatment. However, some people need to go to the hospital. In addition, food poisoning is especially serious and potentially life-threatening for young children, pregnant women and their fetuses, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems.

In any case, to prevent food poisoning, these essential principles should be adhered to:

  • Wash your hands, utensils and food surfaces often.
  • Keep raw foods separate from ready-to-eat foods.
  • Cook foods to a safe temperature.
  • Refrigerate or freeze perishable foods promptly.
  • Defrost food safely.
  • If in doubt, throw it out.

Remember, it is a legal requirement that staff who are involved in a food environment are trained and/or supervised commensurate with their work activity!


Online Food Safety Training

Please remember – it is a legal requirement that staff who are involved in a food environment are trained and/or supervised commensurate with their work activity!

Myelearnsafety offers fully online Food Safety (HACCP) courses.

To find out more, please check our Courses page.

Alternatively, should you need any additional information, please do not hesitate to let us know via email

eLearn Online Health and Safety Training

eLearn Online Health and Safety Training