A new study from the University of Waterloo highlights a low level of awareness among youth around the proper precautions they need to take when it comes to handling food.
The study measured 32 different food-handling behaviours among Ontario high school students in grades 10 to 12. It found that fewer than 50 per cent of the recommended practices were followed by students, including basic hand hygiene and procedures to prevent cross-contamination.
“High school students represent the next generation of food handlers, but they are not well studied,” said Ken Diplock, who led the research while at Waterloo. “They are just starting to prepare food on their own and for others, and they’re also beginning to work in the food industry.
“It’s important to get to students before they develop bad habits.”