Batac City–Twenty-four food handlers of various Department of Science Technology- assisted cooperatives, associations, and Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the Province of Ilocos Norte recently underwent a two-day training on the current Good Manufacturing Practices with emphasis to food safety,at the Ilocos Norte Provincial Science and Technology Center here.
Aimed aimed to equip the food handlers with the basic principles of good manufacturing practices and food safety as they are the front liners in the preparation of food, the training was spearheaded by Mr. Jonathan M. Viernes, Provincial S&T Director, and Mr. Hero D. Galamgam, Microbiologist and Science Research Specialist from the Regional Standard and Testing Laboratory (RSTL) of DOST 1.
PSTD Viernes introduced the guiding principles of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) for the Philippine Food Industry. He discussed the requirements of GMP and its importance and benefits in the food business. He emphasized the importance of Republic Act (RA) No. 10611, also known as the “Food Safety Act of 2013”.
“You have to be more responsible in preparing safer food for consumers because establishing a name in the industry is hard to make,” he told the food handlers.
Mr. Galamgam discussed basic food hygiene and food safety hazards. He emphasized the importance of sanitation and proper handwashing, securing permits and health certifications, prevention of crisscrossing in the production area, and food safety, considering the environment hygiene, design, and construction of facilities and equipment.
Among others, he also discussed proper maintenance or control practices before, during, and after the production.
Mr. Galamgam organized the groupings of participants and had a workshop on the lay-outing of the production processes of their respective firms, the purpose of which is to outline the production processes of the firms and plot or draw their actual arrangements in their production area to avoid crisscrossing in the process.
It was aimed to help the firm organize its production process to be more systematic and to comply with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements based on the collaborative recommendations of the speakers and participants.
“The purpose of this activity is not only to give knowledge on the basic cGMP and food safety, but it will also serve as an avenue to create linkages among the local food handlers in the province”, Mr. Galamgam said. By Laurine R. Sales / DOST – PR