So food safety is always the same stuff right?

So food safety doesn't change right? The basic rules of temperature, cleaning, hygiene, stock rotation, allergen control etc etc are always going to be the same, aren't they?

The answer to both questions is no - and a big NO at that.

I was watching a program the other day about the Battle of Waterloo and in it, there was a scene where a doctor was removing a bit of shot from a guy's leg. The doctor just shoved his bloody fingers into the wound and pulled out the big bit of metal. There was no knocking the guy out, there was no washing of hands, there was no sanitizing the fingers or area, there was no draping the area, there was no sterilizing the room etc etc.

The guy who had been shot had a very good chance of having to have his leg amputated later and then potentially dying of Gangrene. The doctors back then did the best they could, but had no idea that their actions were probably making a bad situation even worse.

Why? Because at that stage in history they had no idea about bacteria and how to eliminate or control them.

We know a lot more now, we know that we need to maintain a clean environment and equipment when we are talking about wounds and their treatment, and with our preparation, handling and storage of food. We know that temperature and it's management is vital to reducing food poisoning. We know now how important it is to have good hygiene and stock rotation and either eliminate or control contamination and cross contamination.

Things we did not know 100 years ago are now just a part of what we do every day in a food business to keep food safe.

What will we know in regard to food safety in another 100 years that we do not know now?

As an example, stop and think about the lovely gardens which are starting to appear in restaurants and cafes to supply fresh produce for our meals and the food safety implications of that.

What about robots in the kitchen cooking and preparing food instead of people - fantasy right? Well, they are already starting to appear in bars on cruise ships - so why is it such a big leap to imagining them in our kitchens?

What are the food safety implications of that?

The basics of keeping cold food cold and hot food hot, keeping all surfaces clean, making sure there is good hygiene and rotating stock, stopping contamination and cross contamination, will not change but there will be so much more for us to learn and to put into use as the years roll on.

So in answer to the question is No, food safety will not always be the same stuff and nor would we want it to be.

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