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Under Pressure: Keeping The Food Industry Safe

Though many industries have been shaken by Covid-19, few have been hit as hard, and to such varied extremes, as the food industry. With the growing news of infected manufacturing plant workers, struggling food service operators, increasing demand on grocery stores, and the mass disposal of crops and livestock, it seems every facet of the food business has been affected. Under the pressure of maintaining a steady supply and the protection of both workers and consumers, food safety has never been more critical.

The Importance of Inspections

The food service industry has been especially impacted by the current pandemic, as well as many companies that provide related products and services. Due to the rapid decline in production, many organizations have had to decrease staffing and rethink resource allocation. These cuts can often result in the decline of effective sanitation and consistent practices. Inspections can help to identify weak links in processes, any possible oversights that might result from down-sizing, and an overall view of how to strengthen food safety with minimal staff.

At the same time, many industries have seen a sharp increase in demand as a result of Covid-19, including commercial food manufacturers and retail suppliers. Such a heavy surge in production comes with its own set of concerns. Many facilities are finding themselves hiring and training new staff, as well as employing temp workers to keep up with orders. Rapid changes such as these can result in improper understanding of food safety protocols, as well as sanitation or maintenance failures, leading to potential contamination risks. Third party inspections from organizations like Avert FSA ensure staff comprehension of food safety practices and the identification of overlooked hazards.

Pandemic-Proof Practices

In order to ensure the safety of you and your team, recent changes in key practices might include:

  • Effective social distancing, and the utilization of space among staff
  • Proper use of protective clothing, as outlined by the CDC and other trusted industry experts
  • Frequent hand washing, as well as the use of hand sanitizer and gloves
  • Use of disposable masks
  • The sanitization of high-contact objects and surfaces
  • The monitoring of COVID-19 symptoms and immediate notification of any exhibited symptoms
  • Virtual audit options

How Avert Can Help

With over 20 years of hands-on experience in the food industry, Avert FSA is your one-stop shop for food safety training, program development, and inspection needs.

Click here to learn how Avert FSA can help protect and support your organization.

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Matthew McClure provides sound strategies that instill cost-effective methods for building robust food safety, operational and quality assurance programs. Along with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Microbiology from The University of Akron and an MBA in Finance from Louisiana State University, Matthew brings over 20 years of experience in the food safety industry to AVERT Food Safety Advisors. His knowledge spans many areas including FDA food processing facilities, USDA meat and poultry plants, dietary supplement manufacturers, retail, cannabis manufacturing, and food service operations.

Contact us for more information:

info@avertfoodsafety.com | Tel: +1 702.706.6574

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