Food Safety And Hygiene

Being healthy is a person’s most basic need and right. Food products are among the factors that affect our health the most. Therefore the safety of food products is a definite demand of the consumer and is the complete responsibility of the management in production companies. This is why in the quality system terminology it is necessary to have definite and unchanging quality in food safety. If an administrator wants production to be done at their facilities in accordance with hygiene standards and for each of the products they produce and sell to be safe they must establish, maintain and support a Food Safety Control System

When it is considered that only a small amount of the product can be extracted and analyzed, it is necessary to know that a constant analyzing system does not achieve safety on its own. Therefore a more preventive method that handles all of the stages of management systematically must be used. The HACCP Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points concept is a system that provides a systematic and logical approach towards this need. Food Safety, also one of the most important issues in the integration to the European Union, emerges in a form that fulfills all of the demands of this standard in the inspections of official agencies like the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Codex demands.


  • ISO 22000 Food Safety Management System –rules for the companies in the Food Chain
  • ISO/TS 22003 Food Safety Management System – rules for the companies that inspect and certify the Food Safety management systems
  • ISO/TS 22004 Food Safety Management System – application of ISO 22000:2005

What is Food Safety?

Food Safety is the cycle of processing, preparing, storing and presenting to consumers of food in a way that prevents biological, physical and chemical factors that cause food related illness. Safe food is food that has been cleared of any kind of rotting and factors that cause contagion and is suitable for consumption. Food related illnesses are dangerous for people and especially for children, the elderly and pregnant women. The World Health Organization (WHO) considers food safety to be one of the most widespread health problems in the world and one of the most important factors that decrease economic productivity. With the application of food safety programs these risks are reduced to a minimum.

Hygiene: The word hygiene was derived from the Greek word ‘hygies’ which means health and it includes such subjects as health science, health services and preventive medicine. They are the applications that are set forth to achieve and sustain conditions necessary for health. The dictionary meaning of the word is a set of practices that applies the knowledge of an individual, or as a group, people on nutrition, health and environment to protect and improve their health.

Food Hygiene: Food hygiene is any kind of measure and conditions applied to control harmful elements, taking into account the purpose of food use, and making food suitable for human consumption. It means the cleanliness and cleared from any type of pathogen elements.

Sanitation: Sanitation means making healthy. It is achieved through cleaning and disinfecting.

Sanitation in the Food Industry: means the creation and preservation of hygienic conditions in the food industry. It also means the prevention of any germs from a variety of sources during the packaging, transport and sales of food materials.

Sterilization: The purification of a setting from all live organisms, live spores and viruses.

Disinfection: CKilling and preventing the reproduction of pathogen micro-organisms in nonliving materials through physical and chemical means.

Antiseptic: Substances that can kill germs or prevent them from reproducing.

There are a number of harmful germs in the soil, water, animals and people. These germs can be carried by hands and by kitchen tools such as wiping cloths and cutting boards and cause poisoning or illness originating from food.
  • Take care to be clean.
  • Wash your hands often before and during food preparation.
  • While preparing food clean the tools you use and the counter to clear away germs.
  • Clear your kitchen and your food from harmful insects, pests and animals.
Particularly raw foods like meat, poultry and seafood and their juices may contain germs. These dangerous germs may contaminate other foods during food preparation.
  • Keep cooked food separate from raw food and the knives, cutting boards and cleaning cloths of the raw food.
  • Do not let food like meat, fish and chicken touch other.
Studies have shown that the germs in food which has been heated up to 70ºC is eliminated and it is safe to eat this food. Be especially careful of this in ground beef, roast, meat with large bones and whole chicken.
  • Cook foods like meat, chicken, eggs and fish thoroughly.
  • Boil soup and stews until sure that it is completely cooked (70ºC). The juice of meat and chicken should be clear not bloody. The best practice is to use a thermometer.
  • When reheating food make sure that it is heated all the way through.
The suitable temperature for germs to reproduce is between 5 ºC and 60 ºC. Outside of these temperatures, other than a few exceptions, the reproduction of germs slows down and stops.
  • Do not leave cooked food at room temperature for more than 2 hours, take care to store food in the refrigerator.
  • Cooked food should be kept hot until it is placed on the dinner plate.
  • Even in the refrigerator, do not store food for a long time.
  • Do not thaw out frozen food at room temperature.
Dangerous germs and chemical substances may contaminate raw materials including water and ice. Dangerous chemical substances can be formed in damaged and softened food.
  • Use clean water.
  • Choose fresh foods that are not crushed or rotten.
  • Choose foods that have gone through a purifying process like pasteurized milk.
  • Thoroughly wash vegetables and fruit that are eaten raw.
  • Do not eat foods that are expired.


Physical Contamination Foreign objects such as pieces of glass, hair, flies, etc. that are not food but external elements cause physical contamination. Normally physical risks do not cause food originating illness but they may harm the human body. For example; stones can damage teeth. Glass and hard plastic can cause cuts in the mouth and throat. Fish bones and chicken bones can get stuck in the throat.

Chemical Contamination pesticides used during farming, detergents that are remain because of not rinsing plates and utensils thoroughly, detergents, cleaning agents and disinfectants used in cleaning machines used in the production process of foods and colored plastics used in food packages can all cause chemical contamination.

Biological Contamination Poisonous substances that are found in the natural composition of foods (green or sprouting potatoes, poisonous honey, some types of mushrooms) and micro organisms (molds, parasites, viruses, bacteria) that reproduce due to foods not being stored in the right conditions or because of hygienic conditions not being provided may cause biological contamination. Bacteria are the most common factor among micro organisms that threaten food safety and cause illnesses and food poisoning brought on by food.

Cross Contamination Refers to a bad micro organism in another food product contaminating clean food. It is bacteria from raw meat, and raw food like unwashed vegetables being carried to prepared food that can spoil easily like cooked meat, cheese and salads through dirty hands, unclean utensils, etc. Bacteria can easily spread from one food to another by direct contact or by one food dripping on another. Cross contamination is one of the main causes of food poisoning. Contamination control varies according to the product variety. The following matters need to be paid attention to in order to prevent cross contamination.
  • More care should be taken towards foods that are sold in open containers and have a higher risk. These types of foods should be kept physically separate from each other.
  • Foods that are on display should be properly packaged or closed over.
  • It must not be forgotten that there are micro organisms in raw foods. If raw foods come into contact with foods that have already been cooked and are ready for consumption, these foods may become contaminated as well. Therefore raw and cooked foods must be kept separately.
  • Harmful bacteria may have spread to the outer packaging of meats. Therefore even if raw meat is packaged it must be kept away from foods that are ready for consumption. If cooked and raw foods are to be kept in the same refrigerator they must be packaged or covered and placed on the shelves under prepared foods. This will prevent the raw foods from dripping on the cooked foods.
  • Different utensils should be used for raw and cooked food. If separate utensils cannot be used special care should be shown to cleaning and disinfecting.
  • The temperature of foods should be checked constantly and the thermometer should be cleaned before and after use.
  • If raw and cooked foods are to be prepared on the same counter special care must be taken for personal hygiene. Separate utensils, equipment, preparation space and cleaning tools (cloth, sponge, etc.) should be used. The separation of these tools and equipment can be managed easily by marking in different colors.
  • After preparing raw foods hand must be cleaned thoroughly before touching any other food or equipment.

The Golden Rules of the World Health Organization (WHO) for Preparing Safe Food
  • Processed foods should be selected in order to ensure safety.
  • Foods should be cooked well.
  • Cooked foods should be consumed immediately.
  • Cooked foods should be stored carefully.
  • The temperature of reheated food must reach at least 70 °C throughout.
  • Contact between cooked foods and raw foods should be avoided.
  • All kitchen surfaces should be kept clean.
  • Food should be protected from insects, rodents and other animals.
  • Safe water should be used.