Like many countries throughout the world, Australia uses the HACCP management system of food safety. It is a system which addresses food safety through analysis and control of biological, chemical and physical hazards. The system has controls from raw materials, procurement and handling, manufacturing, distribution and consumption of the finished product.

The Food Handler Certification Programme

This programme teaches food handlers the general principles of how to achieve safe food handling. It includes public health legislation, food microbiology, allergies, temperature control, cross contamination, personal hygiene, cleaning and sanitizing. Courses are run that can be self study, test only options and recertification.

Why should food handlers be certified?

Through training and certification it helps to increase knowledge and make improvements in food safety. The programme is designed to teach food handlers the general principles required to maintain safe levels of food handling.

Origins of Food Processing

The origins of food processing can be traced back as long ago as the prehistoric age. The methods used at that time were crude and involved the slaughtering of animals, fermenting, drying, and the preservation using salt and cooking methods such as roasting, smoking, steaming and baking. In the modern age food processing can be carried out in several ways, in the home, in community groups, as a cottage industry or in a commercial organization using sophisticated factories or processing units. Whatever the method of food processing that is undertaken, the principal aim of food processing is to ensure the microbiological and chemical safety of foods ensure there is a sufficient or adequate nutritional content and the finished product is of an acceptable level to the consumer to ease the preparation process. Food processing can have both beneficial and harmful effects in the property of food. Each of these factors must be taken into account during the design and preparation of the food processing.

Nutrition rich foods such as fruit

The availability of foods such as fruit and other foods rich in nutrition often have several safety concerns. These safety concerns if applied incorrectly can have a direct impact on the health and safety of consumers of these products. Food processing can affect the content, activity and bioavailability of several nutrients. The health promotional capacity of fruit products may depend upon the processing history of a particular fruit. Traditional technology used in thermal processing can be effective at increasing the nutritional value of a product but this may not be the most effective way of addressing the food safety of a particular fruit. Modern fruit processing plants can improve the quality of life for people suffering from several allergies or even diabetes. Fruit processing plants can also add supplementary nutrients such as vitamins during the production process. Processed fruit is also less susceptible to easily being spoiled than that of fresh fruit in addition being better suited for longer distances in transportation to the consumer from the processing plant.

Some disadvantages associated with fruit processing

The process of fruit processing can decrease the nutritional value of some fruit in addition to introducing hazards not found in these fruits in their natural state. Processed fruit will often contain additives, items such as flavouring, texture enhancing agents (which often have little or no nutritional value) and which may in fact be unhealthy rather than as the name might suggest. Preservatives added during the processing cycle extend the shelf-life of a product but can be the cause of adverse health effects in humans. The use of low cost ingredients that mimic the natural ingredients such as vegetable oils in place of natural saturated fats can cause severe health problems.

Conclusion

Like any responsible business involved in the food industry Fresh Express is fully up to date with its HACCP certification. This certification enables the company to receive, inspect, store, re-pack as well as order, prepare and deliver fresh fruit and vegetables to its customers.