Main Article Content
Background: Unsafe food is a serious concern for human health and well-being and has surfaced as a burning issue worldwide.
Aims: The present work was aimed at assessing the awareness, behavior and practices of food safety and hygiene among Women in Eastern region of Saudi Arabia.
Methodology: A comprehensive questionnaire was designed for collecting required data. The questionnaire comprised mainly of three questions pertaining to food safety issue like (1) knowledge and attitude of food handling (buying, storage and serving food), (2) behavior and practices, (3) food safety knowledge & awareness. The data were analyzed for descriptive, frequency distribution and percentages using SPSS software.
Results: Findings indicated that 40% of the women purchased their foods and needs on weekly basis with high rate for the chicken (67.7%) and meat (57.9%), while 26.4% “weekly” utilize or cook vegetables and fruits. 96.2%, 97.4% and 98.3% of the women “always” washed their hands after touching raw chicken/meats and fish, while 48.9% utilized separate cutting boards/knives for raw chicken/meat and fish. However, 89.8% of respondent female rinse cutting boards, knives and plates used for chicken/meats and fish before using them for other food. Only 22.6% of the women “always” checked their fridge temperature (4°C), while 28.1% and 23.4% of the female believed that it was “safe” to leave hot or cold foods out of the fridge for more than 4 hours, respectively. 60% of women believed that it was safe practices to thaw food outside the fridge.
Conclusion: Majority of the women in Eastern region (>90%) were well aware of food safety and wash their hands, cutting boards, knives and plates. However, about 25% of the respondent’s female believed that it was “safe” to leave hot/cold foods out of the fridge for more than 4 hours, while 60% believed it was “safe” to defrost frozen foods outside the fridge.
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