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Health and Safety for Workers in the Food Industry

Some health and safety considerations of working in the drink, food and meat industry include food processing, food machinery, flour dust, poultry dust, noise from band saws in the frozen fish industry and other food processing machines, UV lights and managing migrant workers (shift work patterns).

The food and drink manufacturing industry actually comprises over 30 different sectors. The largest of these is the bakery sector followed by meat processing, drinks industries, dairies, animal feed and fish processing.

Main causes of injury:

  • Falls from height
  • Food processing machinery
  • Manual handling
  • Packaging machinery
  • Slips on wet/contaminated floors
  • Struck by something
  • Workplace transport

Causes of occupational ill health:

  • Exposure to disinfectants
  • Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs)
  • Noise-induced hearing loss
  • Occupational asthma and rhinitis
  • Occupational dermatitis
  • Work-related stress