Montero, Cristina; Celaya, Carlos; MartÃn, Rosario
Introduction: The popularity of Food Trucks is growing in our country. Food Trucks or mobile food vending vehicles due to their reduced space, the lack of permanent location and the large influx of customers, increases the risk of cross-contamination during food preparation and as a consequence, foodborne illness may occur.
Objectives: The objective of this work was to evaluate the hygiene and health practices of the food handlers of Food Trucks, in the context of a Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP).
Methods: A 20 vehicle sample have been evaluated, through an observational study and the design of a questionnaire to collect data.
Results: In 95 % of the vehicles, handlers touched food barehanded and in 60%, handlers touched money. Regarding the cleaning and personal hygiene, no glove changing nor hand washing was observed, moreover, no surface nor kitchenware cleaning was observed. Regarding the risky practices observed, in 70 % of Food Trucks food that required refrigeration temperatures was mantained at room temperature, in 65 % practices that can cause cross-contamination were observed and in 95 % potential contamination sources were observed.
Discussion: These results revealed a general lack of knowledge of the correct hygienic handling practices by the workers of Food Trucks.
Conclusions: This study highlights the need to improve the workers´ training in the correct hygienic handling practices and a better control of Food Trucks by the food safety authorities.