Date: 07 Oct 2011

Educational Programs to Translate Food Safety Knowledge

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Abstract

Education is an important component of all food safety and food ­security programs. To achieve food security, food has to reach the entire population and involves not only growing or importing food, but also storage, transportation and marketing. Food safety and quality programs designed around the HACCP concept, that incorporates good manufacturing practices helps ensure that food is stored and distributed in a manner to avoid safety hazards and minimize losses due to spoilage, pests and cross-contamination. Embedded within HACCP regulations of the United States and the European Union are requirements for training farmers, workers, supervisors, and regulatory officials. This educational training must be ongoing and tailored to each specific audience, which may range from college educated to illiterate workers. Food safety ­educational programs are best translated when a holistic approach to learning objectives is used. It is important to encourage a learner-centered approach to food safety education, which encourages innovation and collaboration. If the instructor is committed to quality and continuous improvement, it is easy to incorporate new food safety knowledge into any educational program. The cooperative extension program in the United States is the most successful model for taking knowledge from discovery to the end user.