Clean Hands Well to Eat Well
Hand hygiene is essential to food safety. Food workers’ unclean hands may spread disease-causing microorganisms as well as antimicrobial-resistant ‘superbugs’ from their bodies and raw food to utensils, kitchen surfaces, and ready-to-eat food. Other than unclean hands, using dirty towels for drying hands and inappropriate usage of disposable gloves have also been recognised as probable causes of large-scale food poisoning outbreaks in restaurants in the past. Proper hand hygiene helps reduce the transmission of foodborne diseases and help battle antimicrobial resistance along the food chain.
Washing hands: the most effective way to address food poisoning
Food handlers are recommended to wash their hands with liquid soap and water, rubbing hands for 20 seconds, to reduce the spread of preventable infectious diseases. One should wash hands before and after handling foods or wearing hand gloves; and in the course of food preparation when hands get contaminated, such as after touching the face, coughing, sneezing or blowing the nose, going to the toilet, smoking, handling dirty items such as money, wastes, mobile phones, chemicals, raw food and done with cleaning.
In support of the theme of the United Nations' World Food Safety Day on 7 June, “Safer food, better health”, the CFS is taking this chance to promote the importance of hand hygiene in relation to food safety and human health to food handlers as the theme of CFS' Food Safety Day 2022. The CFS will join hands with the District Health Centre (DHC) to enhance the public's awareness and knowledge of hand hygiene practice while handling food through health talks and training, as well as educational videos broadcast at DHCs across the territory. Keeping food handlers' hands clean is an important component to safe food and satisfied customers. Let's wash hands well to eat well, and practise good hand hygiene altogether!
- Hand Washing Guideline for Food Handlers (Includes a mini-poster on proper hand washing)
- Hand Washing and Food Safety (In Chinese only)
- Thematic video – Everything Everywhere Wash Your Hands (In Cantonese with English captions)
- 7 Steps to Hand Washing
- When to wash your hands? - Clean hands well to eat well
- Wash hands with soap and water for 20 seconds before handling food
- Dry hands with paper towel after washing hands
- Use disposable gloves correctly and change them at appropriate time