Resource Management - Food safety and Hygiene

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There are three main ways in which food can come contaminated, they are:

Physical contamination:

  • can occur at any time of production.
  • Includes pieces of metal or plastic entering the food, or things that were supposed to have been removed e.g. pips, stones, stalks etc.
  • Pests can also contaminate food with droppings.

Chemical Contamination

  • Includes metal residues, pesticides, cleaning materials.
  • Careless use of chemicals leads to food contamination.
  • Farmers which use pesticides put chemicals in the food.
  • Food additive quanities needs to be carefully considered also.

Micro-organism Contamination

  • Food changes durring storage.
  • This process can affect the colour, flavour, texture and appearance of food -  mostly colour changes are harmless.
  • Changes caused by micro-organisms and enzymes.
  • Micro-organisms include yeasts, viruses, mould and bacteria.
  • Bacteria which are harmful are called Pathogenic bacteria 

Food spoilage by Micro-organisms


  • Moulds are tiny plants or fungi which grow on the surface of food.
  • Produce spores which travel in the air.
  • Prefer warm moist conditions.
  • Can be used for good e.g. cheese such as stilton.
  • Generally mouls are harmless but some contain mycotoxins which can be dangerous.
  • Mycotoxins are naturally occurring toxins produced by moulds.


  • Do not cause food poisoning but can cause food spoilage.
  • Found naturally in environment, and require warm moist conditions to reproduce.
  • Yeasts are essential for the production of bread, wine and beer.


  • Not usually considered to be a living organism as they consist of genetic material.
  • Can cause disease as they destroy living cells.
  • Viruses carried around by humans, animals, birds, water and sewage.
  • The Hepatitis A virus can be passed on in food thorugh infected food handlers.


  • Bacteria are single-celled micro-organisms found in water, air, soil, people and animals.
  • They are essential in the production of yoghurt and cheese.
  • Probiotic drinks contain 'helpful' bacteria and claim to have health benefits.
  • To multiply they require warm, moist, food conditions.
  • Spoliage bacteria -  this bacteria affects the quality of the food product and sometimes makes it unsafe to eat.
  • Pathogenic bacteria - Pathogenic bacteria includes salmonella, staphylococcuss, clostridium.
  • Food-borne disease - illnesscaused by eating food contaminated by harmful substances.

Food posioning

  • Can be caused by pathogenic bacteria, but also can be caused by viruses, chemicals, and metals contaminating the food substance.
  • Can also be contaminated by posionous plants and animals.
  • Two ways in which bacteria can make you ill - by eating the live bacteria or eating the toxin they produce.

Eating pathogenic bacteria

  • Bacteria enters to stomach and intestine and multiplies, this is how the most common pathogenic bacteria causes illness.
  • Some bacteria


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