Food products are one of the most-traded commodities in the world. The increase in population and globalization has only led to an increase in the scale and complexity of the global food supply chain. This increasing demand in the food industry makes food safety a universal concern and absolute significance. Maintaining food safety has become a compelling requisite for food entrepreneurs to thrive in today’s competitive food industry market.
What is food safety?
Food safety includes several processes that need to be followed by the food entrepreneurs to safeguard the consumers from any physical, chemical, and biological hazards during the entire life cycle of the food. This includes procurement, processing, packaging, delivery, and storage. Different regulatory bodies offer comprehensive guidelines for food manufacturers based on food safety.
Why food safety is important?
Taking into consideration the role and importance of food on human health, the need to create a food safety maintaining system is increasing than ever. Food safety is considered important for the following reasons.
- Every day more and more people fall sick due to bacteria, viruses, chemical hazards, toxins, or parasites that are found in the food.
- Without food safety you cannot identify is a food is contaminated or not. Consuming contaminated food can lead to food poisoning.
- Food poisoning can lead to serious and long-term health hazards. The risk is especially high in infants, pregnant women, elderly, and the people with weak immune system.
- Food safety prevents germs from multiplying in food and reaching hazardous level. This ensures that the food is consumed in a safe condition.
- If the consumer identifies any product defects or safety issues in food, the food manufacturer will be at risk of legal action.
Hence, maintaining food safety becomes essential in the food industry for the benefit of the consumer as well as the manufacturer.
Importance of food safety in the food industry
Food safety holds great significance both financially and ethically. If food safety guidelines are violated by food manufacturers, it can lead to disastrous consequences. The importance of ensuring food safety is listed below
1. For food manufacturers
Food safety plays an important role in maintaining the reputation of a food manufacturing company. Failing to implement an effective food safety practice can lead to contaminated food products entering the market. If the defective food products are discovered, it can cause dramatic disruptions in the operations of the food manufacturing company. The company then had to announce for food recalls.
Food recalls cost can be a huge loss for companies. And the most important thing is that it will leave a negative impact on your brand among the people which will have a long-term effect. This is perhaps more costly than the food recalls cost. Thus, any food-producing company should not give up on food safety. It is an important investment that cannot be missed out.
2. For Human
The human cost of unsafe food is higher than anything. More than 200 diseases are spread worldwide through food. It is estimated that over 4,20,000 people die every year due to food contamination, most of which are children belonging to the age group of 1 to 5 years. Food contamination can lead to various long-term health problems like neurological disorders, ulcers, cancer, and more. The impact of foodborne diseases is severe in infants, pregnant women, sick, and the elderly. This might lead to serious illness and sometimes death.
3. For government
Food safety is directly related to the socio-economic progress of the country. A lack of food safety affects public health services, tourism, food exports, livelihoods of food handlers, and more people, which in turn leads to unstable economic development.
How food safety consultants will help your industry?
Maintaining food safety is becoming more challenging, especially with increasing legal requirements for HACCP plans and other food safety schemes. Worried about regulating your food safety system and complying with new rules and regulations? Food consultants are experts in offering food safety consulting services. They can offer expert technical assistance for compliance of various food safety license and schemes. Food consultants have extensive knowledge and experience working with all sectors of the food industry. Get services to fit your needs, improve your profitability, and stay ahead of the competition.
To sum up, food safety is a shared responsibility. Government, food producers, industries, and consumers need to collaborate and communicate with each other to make use of the best available food safety practices. The government should take steps to make people aware of common food hazards, how to choose food wisely, and how to handle food safely.