The effects of Covid-19 have been massive in our lives. It has had serious effects on the food industry, including substantial financial losses. Even though the food industry has faced many challenges this year, recent data has revealed an apparent upside to the situation.
It has been observed that there has been a significant drop in the number of food-borne illnesses and infections in the past few months. Experts believe that the stringent health and safety measures that have been implemented during this pandemic may have played an active role in declining food-borne infection outbreaks.
The impact of safety measures in preventing food-borne illnesses
We know that food-borne illnesses are caused when contaminated food with harmful microorganisms is consumed. These food-borne pathogens can be either bacteria, viruses, or parasites. These pathogens can infect food through biological contamination, chemical contamination, physical contamination, and cross-contamination.
In order to tackle the spread of harmful microorganisms and reduce the risk of food-borne infection, it’s important to follow proper cleaning and sanitizing protocols. Due to the pandemic there has been a rise in regular hand washing, cleaning, and sanitizing and it appears that this has helped in significant reduction of food-borne illnesses.
Other common contributors to food-borne illnesses are improper preparation of food and food handling by staff. The temporary shutdown of restaurants and other dine-in food service businesses also helped in eliminating this potential source of food-borne infection outbreaks.
Food businesses are slowly and gradually reopening now and with stringent safety regulations keeping the health and hygiene at top of the mind. These strict protocols are contributing to the decrease that we are witnessing in the illnesses. The current shutdown of certain types of food-service businesses like buffets, fast-food restaurants, roadside food stalls have played a role in reducing food-borne infections. As we know there are higher chances of food-borne illnesses arising from the food consumption of such types of food businesses.
Continued Elevation of Safety and Hygiene
Now that these strict hygiene practices are in place, enhanced safety and hygiene standards should continue to exist even post pandemic. Certification programs and real-time monitoring of the safety culture at food establishments will help in elevating the safety and hygiene practices. Safe Place to Dine is one such certification program by Equinox Labs for the restaurant and hospitality industry that can help improve the safety standards through audits and then being certified as a safe and hygiene place.
With Hygiene Quotient, a new age app-based service for commercial establishments monitors the day-to-day hygiene and safety practices and lets you apply corrective actions with instant feedback and daily metrics. Get in touch with us to ensure complete safety of your food business!