n African Journal for Physical Health Education, Recreation and Dance - Assessment of food handler's compliance to personal hygiene practices in fast food outlets in Thohoyandou, South Africa

Volume 21 Number 4.1
  • ISSN : 1117-4315


Food safety is becoming a key public health priority because a large number of people consume their meals outside their homes. As a result, they are exposed to food borne illnesses that originate from food stalls, restaurants and other food outlets. Hence the major objective of carrying out this research study was to assess food handler's adherence to personal hygiene practices in fast food outlets in Thohoyandou as stipulated in national food hygiene and regulations. The data was collected using participant observational checklist. Simple random sampling was used to select 122 food handlers as participants in the study. Data analysis involved descriptive statistics (frequencies and percentages). Result analysis was made based on the standards and the requirements prescribed by Regulation R962 of November 2012. The findings showed that food handlers observed personal hygiene by wearing clean uniforms, covering their heads with hair nets, and washed their hands, indicating that food handlers maintained accepted standards in terms of personal hygiene regulations. Regarding health surveillance practices majority of food handler were not medically examined regularly, however they reported illness to management when sick, but some prepared food when they had cough and open sores on their hands. The study recommends that strict adherence to Regulations R962 be enforced and adhered to in order to ensure and assure the preservation and maintenance of food safety.

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