What are the Main Causes of Food Contamination According to ServSafe?

The main causes of food contamination according to ServSafe are:

  • Poor personal hygiene of food handlers
  • Cross-contamination (the transfer of harmful bacteria from one surface or food to another)
  • Improper storage and holding temperatures of food
  • Use of contaminated equipment or utensils
  • Failure to properly clean and sanitize equipment and food contact surfaces
  • Pest infestations
  • Use of contaminated food ingredients
  • Failure to properly cook or reheat foods
  • Lack of proper food safety training for food handlers It’s very important to implement food safety procedures and train the food handlers to prevent these causes and ensure food safety.

How to Prevent Food Contamination?

To prevent food contamination in the USA, the FDA has established several regulations and guidelines, including the following:

  • The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), aims to prevent food contamination by focusing on the safety of the entire food supply chain, from farm to table.
  • The Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) program, requires food manufacturers and processors to identify and control potential hazards in the production process.
  • The Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) regulations, set standards for the design, construction, and maintenance of food processing facilities.
  • The Current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) regulations, require food manufacturers to maintain strict sanitation and hygiene standards in their facilities.
  • The Safe Quality Food (SQF) program, is a food safety management system that is recognized by retailers and food service providers worldwide.
  • The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), is a collaboration between some of the world’s leading food safety experts and organizations, working to improve food safety standards worldwide.
  • The Produce Safety Rule outlines science-based standards for the growing, harvesting, packing, and holding of fruits and vegetables in order to minimize the risk of serious illness or death from the consumption of contaminated produce.

It is always important to follow proper sanitation and hygiene practices, such as washing hands and properly cleaning and sanitizing equipment and surfaces, and properly storing, handling, and preparing food to minimize the risk of contamination.