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Getting Food Safety and Food Hygiene Messages into Schools

University of Surrey
Winchester and Eastleigh Healthcare NHS Trust
Start date
End date
One important way of getting hygiene related information into homes is through school based education. Children educated in an effective way whilst at school will, hopefully, become adults who observe good hygiene practices and, as children, might also act as facilitators of good hygiene practices in their home through the messages that they convey to family members.

The research will review and evaluate sources of hygiene related information available to schools at all Key Stages, determine which of these are used and which are most effective in improving hygiene related knowledge and behaviours of pupils at the different Key Stages. It will identify short-comings in the existing provision and practical actions that could be introduced to overcome these. The proposed work will support the Agency's efforts to reduce the incidence of foodborne disease by 20% by 2006.

More information
The project uses a variety of methods to achieve its objectives. These include structured evaluations of resources, in-depth interviews with teachers to discuss their use of resources, questionnaires (or other appropriate instrument depending on the age of the children) to determine children's hygiene related knowledge and self-reported behaviour, and in-depth interviews with children to establish the barriers to good hygiene practices. This study aims to:

Identify gaps in current provision of food hygiene education at the different Key Stages or Scottish equivalents, in relation to the content and presentation of information.

Identify the most effective ways of influencing the attitudes and behaviour of young people.

Provide information on the barriers that young people face to performing appropriate hygiene related behaviours (essential in planning new initiatives).

Identify practical actions that the Agency can take to improve the knowledge of young people, and bring about desired changes in behaviour, based on proven theories relating to hygiene education. In doing so it will support the Agency's aim to reduce the incidence of foodborne disease.

Find more about this project and other FSA food safety-related projects at the Food Standards Agency Research webpage.

Funding Source
Food Standards Agency
Project number
Natural Toxins
Bacterial Pathogens