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Safe and effective hand washing

Published 4th March, 2013 by Neil Nixon

Safe and effective hand washing

Hands are recognised worldwide as one of the most common vehicles of contamination within the food industry. Dangerous pathogens can be picked up by food handlers handling raw meats, bins, dirty equipment, door handles, phones and even computer keyboards. There is also an inherent risk of the spread of pathogens by the hands of food handlers who are, or have recently been sick with food borne disease, where, the carriage and spread of very low numbers of some bacterial cells and foodborne viruses are enough to infect the consumer.

It is no surprise therefore that good personal hygiene, and in particular, effective hand-washing, forms one of the most important HACCP pre-requisite controls.

As such, Richard Mallett, director of the European division of HACCP International and a microbiologist, was delighted when global skin care company, Deb Group, approached HACCP International to certify the food safety characteristics of the recently launched OxyBAC foaming soap range. Deb Group wished to endorse its claim that OxyBAC is a safe and effective antibacterial hand wash for use in any food handling environment, where higher standards of hand hygiene are required. HACCP International was selected as the equipment and materials certification body to do just this.

HACCP International performed an in-depth product and facility evaluation to establish and verify the claims that Deb Group wanted to make for OxyBAC. This involved an inspection of production facility site standards, raw material batch, processing and packaging controls, toxicity, and efficacy, labeling and marketing claims.

On receiving certification, Deb's UK marketing director Phil Spark said: “HACCP International Certification now paves the way for Deb to satisfy the stringent demands of technical managers and buyers within the food industry who are under immense pressure to ensure that equipment and materials, as well as foodstuffs, are well controlled and will not present a food safety risk to their operation; it is a need that is demanded by food hygiene legislation and by global codes of practice such as the British Retail Consortium and the Global Food Safety Standard and Deb is proud to be able to help them to meet this need.”

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