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Cuts and abrasions

How to deal with cuts and abrasions when working in the kitchen.
A bright bandage/plaster is used so that it can be seen if it mistakenly drops into the food during preparation or service
© International Culinary Studio

It is particularly important to keep all cuts, burns, boils, scratches, grazes and similar abrasions covered with a waterproof dressing (blue plaster) and gloves to avoid contaminating food with bacteria.

  • If a cut or abrasion becomes infected there are a large number of harmful bacteria that must not be allowed to come into contact with food.
  • Report any infected skin problems or injuries to your supervisor or head chef before starting work
  • Cuts, abrasions and open sores must be covered up. This prevents bodily fluids and bacteria coming into contact with food .
  • Cover any injuries with brightly non-food coloured dressings for ease of detection in case they come off.
  • Wear gloves as added protection.
  • Remember to change the dressing frequently, disposing of the used bandage appropriately.
  • Plasters or bandages should be waterproof. Some plasters contain a metal strip for ease of detection.
  • The key contaminant of uncovered cuts and sores is Staphylococcus aureus . The incubation period is 0.5-8 hours and leads to nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhoea.

Records

Remember, keeping records of any injuries suffered in the workplace and the treatment given are further points of importance for food safety.

© International Culinary Studio
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Food Safety and Personal Hygiene in a Professional Kitchen

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