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University of Namibia (2019)

Knowledge, attitudes and practices on food safety among food handlers in Opuwo district, Kunene region, Namibia

Hakwenye, Helena Lamanguluka

Titre : Knowledge, attitudes and practices on food safety among food handlers in Opuwo district, Kunene region, Namibia

Auteur : Hakwenye, Helena Lamanguluka

Université de soutenance  : University of Namibia

Grade : Master of Science Applied field Epidemiology 2019

Résumé
Food safety is a key component of food security as food can only be considered to exist, if it is safe for human consumption. Food handlers play a massive role in food safety, it is for this purpose we conducted a study to determine knowledge, attitudes and practices of food safety among food handlers in Opuwo District. An analytical cross sectional study was conducted, using a multi-staged probability sampling method. A total of 137 food handlers participated in the study from 24 kitchens in the district. The majority of participants 65% (89/137) were females and 57.7% (79/137) were from state kitchens. The level of knowledge on food safety was inadequate as there were only 36% (49/137) respondents with adequate knowledge, with an average score of 45% (13.5/30). The levels of knowledge were significantly associated with levels of education (P-value of 0.03). Respondents had good attitudes towards food safety, with only two (1.5%) respondents with a negative attitude. Most food handlers (91%, 125/137) were found to be practicing food safety. Food handlers from private kitchens were more likely to always wash their hands with soap before handling food (OR= 4.89, 95% CI = 1.58 – 15.16. All kitchens had portable water, but only 33% (8/24) of the kitchens had hot water. About 17% (4/24) of the kitchens were found with clean washing sinks while about 37.5% (9/24) kitchens did not have washing sinks and 71% (17/24) of the kitchens did not have a hand washing basin. Food handlers in Opuwo District had limited knowledge on food safety, with positive attitudes towards food safety and good food safety practices. Poor hygiene levels of food preparation area was observed in most kitchens. One of the recommendations from this study is thus, in-service training of food handlers on food safety.

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