Abstract Foodborne illnesses are a growing concern within the United States, North Carolina andDavidson County and will likely continue to increase unless proper methods for addressing thefive risk factors are developed to decelerate progression. According to a study by the CDC(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) in 2018, roughly 1 in 6 Americans fall ill everyyear from a foodborne illness (CDC, 2018). This project proposal is to focus on the five riskfactors involved with foodborne illnesses, determine which risk factors are most ?out-ofcompliance? and implement intervention strategies to bridge the gaps in Davidson County?s foodsafety system; as well as create and implement new ideas to bring educational resources andopportunities to the community. In 2012, the State of North Carolina adopted new food handling guidelines, set by theFood and Drug Administration, to no longer observe the extra ?2 point? addition to the finalinspection grade if an employee had a Food Protection Manager certification. The new rulerequires a food industry worker to obtain a food safety certification; otherwise, 2 points willautomatically be deducted. After declaration of this rule, a decrease was noticed for certain riskfactors in establishments where a certification was attained. The department aims to achievecompliance with these risk factors by keeping Food Protection Manager Certification coursesreadily available in our County. Additionally, a food safety advisory panel with annual meetingswill be conducted to allow input from both industry and consumer standpoints; as well as anonline forum that will create a communication link between the industry and RegulatoryAuthorities. The project will begin with a baseline study from the FDA?s suggested four facilitycategories, assessing which risk factors are most often observed during a food serviceinspection. Once completed, the baseline study will allow the execution of interventionstrategies that will be introduced to reduce the occurrence of frequently marked priority riskfactor(s). These intervention strategies will target food industry workers and involve educationalopportunities, in house training, surveys, educational handouts, quality assurance visits, andincentives to promote proper food safety procedures.
Conformance with Standards 7 & 9 of the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards. To become part of a uniform national inspection system and enhance programs for food safety.
County of Davidson