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ATLANTA, Ga. -- Recognizing that a correctly trained staff is the foundation for food safety in any food plant, the Refrigerated Foods Association (RFA) here has developed a new DVD training program designed to educate plant workers on basic food safety principles and ready employees for further training in plant-specific policies.
Titled "Operation Food Safety: Everyone's Mission," the RFA Training DVD encourages food plant workers to enlist in a challenging - but winnable - battle to prevent foodborne illness and disease.
The project, which was released at the RFA's annual conference and exhibition in February, was created and produced by the RFA Technical Committee and the association's technical director, Martin Mitchell. It was co-sponsored by RFA member companies Silliker, Inc., Ecolab, Inc., Kerry Bio-Science, Moody Dunbar, Inc., IPL, Inc., and Packaging Technologies.
The 20-minute DVD program begins with an intensive overview of refrigerated foods and important programs that can ensure their safety and quality. It is then divided into seven short training sessions covering: HACCP; good personal hygiene; microorganisms in the plant; equipment cleanliness; basic building maintenance; allergen control; and food defense.
"The content is very practical," said outgoing RFA president Mark Reser, who was one of the drivers of the new program. "New employees will quickly gain a good understanding of their role and a basic awareness of key food safety programs. Experienced employees will also benefit and perhaps see their jobs in a different light."
Each copy of "Operation Food Safety: Everyone's Mission" includes both an English and Spanish version and is accompanied by a CD manual, containing a read-along section with an overview of each information session, an instructor's guide with suggestions on how to conduct training, and a short quiz and answer key to test employees' knowledge in each session after training.
RFA members will receive one copy of the DVD and CD manual free of charge. Non-members may purchase the program for $200. For additional information visit: http://www.refrigeratedfoods.com/.