Learning food safety courses has never been more important than today. Food service workers should not have the monopoly on food safety and sanitation training – anyone interested in learning about it should enroll in training. With more than two million people dying from diarrheal complications each year, food safety should be at the forefront of anyone in the food service industry.
At Saskatoon First Aid (click here to view the website), there are two levels in food safe training, the first being a basic course and the second focusing on management. Signing up for our programs is quite easy; we have made an online enrollment form available on the Saskatoon First Aid website. It can be filled out at any time of the day, though requests are only processed during office hours. Visit us in person if you want to, as well!
A look into FoodSafe and Food Safety courses
Food safety training in Saskatoon was created in accordance with The Food Regulations, part of Saskatchewan’s Public Health Act of 1994. The act requires all food facilities that handle food to have trained employees present at all times when food is being prepared and stored/served.
The training program is divided into two levels, the first a pre-requisite for the second. Because the first level is a basic course on food safety, it can be taken by anyone with an interest in food safety. The second level targets staff members who are in charge of management and supervising other employees and the establishment itself.
FoodSafe 1 is a basic course that introduces the concepts of safe food handling and foodborne illness to students. Topics such as basic microobiology, pathogens, sanitation, and personal hygiene are covered in the curriculum. It is available in a single eight-hour class or a two four-hour sessions.
FoodSafe 2 is an advanced course that focuses on the management aspect of food safety. This is why the course is targeted towards supervisory and/or managerial staff members. It focuses on staff training and general maintenance of the establishment, over a total of 12 class hours, spread over two days.
Causes of foodborne illness
The main goal of food safety training is to reduce the cases of foodborne illnesses. In Canada, it is estimated that over 4.5 million people are afflicted by foodborne illness each year. Worldwide, more than two million people die from diarrheal diseases – a major complication of foodborne illness. But what exactly causes it?
Pathogens are the main cause of the disease. They are infectious microorganisms that contaminate food during improper handling. They either release a toxin (e.g. Botulism) or the microoganism itself causes the symptoms. The most common pathogens that cause FBIs are:
- Campylobacter spp.
- Clostridium perfringens
- Non-typhoidal salmonella
- Staphylococcus aureus
Chemicals may also cause foodborne illness, specifically food poisoning. This is commonly seen when dangerous pesticides remain on food that is consumed. Improper handling can also cause chemicals used in household cleaning to contaminate food.
Symptoms to watch out for: vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, abdominal cramps – all of which can lead to severe dehydration if not managed adequately.