Keep the 5 Keys of Food Safety (ABCDE) In Mind to Prevent Foodborne Diseases

In everyday life, everyone has experiences of buying, preparing and eating food, especially for food caterers and chefs who have to contact and process the foodstuffs frequently. During any stages in food preparation and processing, there are many chances for food to be exposed in the risk of microbial contamination. For instances, undercooked food in which bacteria is still alive; or, cross contamination happens when bacteria are transferred directly from raw to other foods, or indirectly contacting by hands, chopping boards, wiping cloths, utensils, equipment and so on. If consumers accidentally eat the food prepared under poor hygiene condition, they may suffer from gastrointestinal discomfort, like vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. High-risk individuals, such as infants, children, pregnant women, elderly and people with weak immune systems may be likely to have more serious health effects. The reputation of food and beverage establishments may be affected by food poisoning incidents, and the economic loss in businesses is difficult to be estimated.
No one can predict the health risks and severity of foodborne disease outbreaks for different people. In order to effectively reduce the occurrence of foodborne diseases in Macao and further raise the awareness of food safety precaution and protection among the food industry, the Department of Food Safety of the Municipal Affairs Bureau has specially compiled a set of teaching materials in multilingual versions, called “5 Keys to Food Safety (ABCDE)”, which includes promotional leaflets, animation videos, etc. It allows people from different language and cultural backgrounds who work in the catering industry in Macao to gain food safety knowledge. Learning the “5 Keys” (ABCDE) which are simple and easy to remember is just like starting from A, B, C, D, E when learning English alphabets. By grasping and applying the key points of food safety control flexibly in different stages of food production and operation, such as food purchase, storage, preparation, cooking, display, handling of leftovers and so on, the occurrence of food poisoning incidents can be effectively prevented while enhancing the effectiveness of food safety management as well as reducing food safety risks.
The following animated video elaborates the important content of ‘5 Keys to Food Safety (ABCDE)’ in order to facilitate the food industry to master the food safety tips quickly:


A for Avoid Cross Contamination

B for Buy Right

C for Clean & Cook Completely

D for Danger Temperature Zone

E for Efforts to Maintain Macao Food Safety