What to Know. Personal Hygiene for Food Handlers

Humans are an ideal place for bacteria to grow, which is why Personal Hygiene is such an important factor for people who handle and prepare food.

Below are some of the most common ways personal hygiene issues can lead to bringing bacteria into your kitchen;

Personal Hygiene for Food Handlers

Outdoor Clothing

Don't wear outdoor jackets in the kitchen. Outdoor clothing is frequently contaminated with bacteria which could infect food.

Sneezing and coughing

Sneezing or coughing over food or preparation areas will spread bacteria. When you cough or sneeze, you throw out droplets of moisture. These droplets contain large numbers of bacteria.

Personal Hygiene


Smoking in the workplace is illegal. It is also potentially very dangerous to do so in the kitchen. When smoking, you touch the cigarette with your mouth and also your fingers. This can transfer bacteria from your mouth to your fingers, which can then be transferred onto food.

Dirty Hands

Wash your hands after touching raw food to prevent bacteria from spreading around the kitchen. Dirty finger nails harbour bacteria. To avoid transferring bacteria to food nails should be kept short and clean. Hair should be covered by a net or hat. Don’t comb your hair in the kitchen. Loose hairs and dandruff can fall on food and infect it with bacteria. You will also be expected to wash your hair regularly.

Personal Hygiene

If you'd like to learn more about Food Safety topics, we'd recommend taking our online Food Safety Level Two course. Find out more about the course here.










Sign-up for our newsletter