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An Evaluation of Food Handlers’ knowledge, beliefs and attitudes about food safety and its interpretation using social cognition models
Project Code: B02004
Food Research and Consultancy Unit Cardiff School of Health Sciences UWIC
Griffith, C ; Clayton, D; Peters, A;
University of Wales Institute Cardiff
This project aimed to evaluate food handlers’ knowledge, beliefs and attitudes about food safety and to interpret this information using social cognition models.
All the commercial food handlers in the observational phase of this study had received food hygiene training (formal or informal) and knew which food safety practices they should be carrying out. Nonetheless, food handlers often still failed to implement these practices consistently and adequately. The theory of planned behaviour (TPB) was able to predict the food safety actions of commercial food handlers for certain food safety actions and the attitude data generated can be used to inform the design of food safety interventions and training. However, this model needs further testing and refining to establish predictive validity in a wider study of similar businesses.
Results of this study also suggest that further research needs to be carried out to investigate the effect of managers’ attitudes and organisational culture on the implementation of food safety practices. It appears that providing training to individuals does not always encourage food handlers to implement good practice and intervention strategies need to be integrated with the provision of resources and within a systems framework.
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