MU To Teach Food Safety
The University of Missouri is creating a unique program to help train a growing workforce on issues concerning food safety.
El Maguey manager Pepe Perez, knows the restaurant business. He also knows what employees need to do to keep a safe and clean environment.
"Just be careful, do the right things, clean the hands, tie the hair and start working," Perez said.
MU researchers are now developing a food safety training program specifically geared toward newly hired Hispanic restaurant workers.
Food safety programs are already available in Spanish, but none address cultural differences. According to the MU study, Hispanic restaurant employees tend to work better in groups and learn visually.
Researchers hope to bridge that culture gap.
"They can be more excited, go to the class, and take it," Perez said. "They understand more things, asking less questions everyday."
The program will teach new employees about improvements in personal hygiene, proper temperature control, and safe cooking methods.
"It will make the food more safe," said program director, Seong Hee Cho. "Therefore the consumers will benefit from more safe food made by Hispanic employees at restaurants."
The program also focuses on behavior, attitude and knowledge of food safety. Professor Cho and two other MU researchers are partnering with the University of Nevada on the project.