Module 1- Introduction to food safety and food preservation

Proverb: “From farm to fork, keep food safe.”


 Microorganisms are everywhere. You may not see, taste, or smell them, but they hide on your body, in the air, on kitchen counters and utensils, and in food. The main microorganisms are viruses, parasites, fungi and bacteria. they can contaminate the food and cause food spoilage or foodborne infection .  Of all the microorganisms, bacteria are the greatest threat to food safety. Bacteria are single-celled, living organisms that can grow quickly at favourable temperatures. Some bacteria are useful. We use them to make foods like cheese, buttermilk, sauerkraut, pickles, beer and yoghurt. Other bacteria are infectious disease-causing agents called pathogens that use the nutrients found in potentially hazardous foods to multiply.

Food preservation is the process to handle and treat food in order to control its spoilage by stopping the attack and growth of foodborne diseases causing microbes; avoiding oxidation of fats (rancidity) and maintaining the nutritional value, texture and flavour of the food.  One of the main challenges facing Africa today is ensuring food security, as the countries demand more food than before with the increase in population.  Simple, low-cost, traditional food processing techniques are also the bedrock of small-scale food processing enterprises that are crucial to rural development in Africa. Traditional/indigenous foods also provide inexpensive, safe, nutritious foods throughout the whole year thus boosting overall food security. This lecture considers the Indigenous methods of food preservation and food security in Africa.


At the end of this module you should be able to appreciate :

  • The factors contributing to the increase in the global incidence of food poisoning 
  • Describe the factors contributing to foodborne disease and how to manipulate those factors in order to preserve food.
  • Explain good practices with respect to food storage and preservation practices indigenous to Africa.


The lectures in module 1  will cover 4 short lectures :

  • lecture 1: Introduction to food safety
  • lecture 2: Indicators of food spoilage
  • Lecture 3: Factors affecting microbial growth and food preservation
  • Lecture 4: Indigenous food preservation and food security in Africa

Please click this link to access all the learning materials –

  • The course materials will consist of a short video and a PDF (of the PowerPoint) for each lecture. A reference material called Big bad book (Foodborne Pathogenic Microorganisms and Natural Toxins Handbook) and finally a video called Food preservation – the seven wonders of the microbe world


Reflection: Think of a time you became sick after eating a meal? What went wrong? What were the symptoms? Under what conditions were the food prepared? Was it freshly prepared food or pre-packaged? What resolutions did you make after recovery? (Complete this reflection before you start with the reading materials)

Provocative Question: If you were given the catering contract for an event, what steps will you take to ensure effective
food safety in the event? (Complete your response before you start with the reading materials)



Assignment 1: Watch this video and make a list of how and why people get food poisoning ( please use the comment below to answer the question )


  • Pepple, N. (2017). Environment and Food Poisoning: Food Safety Knowledge and Practice among Food Vendors in Garki, Abuja – Nigeria, J health educ res dev, 5:2, Salem University, Lokoja, Kogi State, Nigeria.
  • WHO, Fact Sheet on Food Safety,


WATCH THE ZOOM VIDEO OF MODULE 1 LIVE SESSION HERE: – Module 1 of Food Safety and Preservation


Collapse Comments

Chris Ezikpe Kalu
Module 1
The food poison affecting some people today is mostly from the food processing down to the consumption.The farmers inadequate storage and preservation are very poor and causes the food exposure to all kinds of pathogens and bacteria that spoiled the food, which leads to food poison.
Washing of hands, irregular washing of hands is another way to get a food poison, either during the processing or during the consumption, due to, improper ways of washing of hands.
Dirty environment and materials we used like clothing and utensils, especially in our kitchen is a major way for food poison.
Distribution of food products from a place to another, most food required fast delivery to remain fresh, which distribution most times delay, causes the food products to spoiled before consumption, which results to food poison.
Poor food products packaging, these days we eat more quantity of package food products without carefully going through the expiring date both of manufacture date and best use dates.all these constitute to our food poison.
The least but not the last, is preparing food while your Sick,a lot of microbial are conterminous from our bodies, which we can’t see with our eyes, so food poison came in many forms.

You have made a comprehensive list well done. it is very important to appreciate and think about ways food can get contaminated during processing in other to take measures to prevent that from happening.

Provocative questions
As a caterer,I will ensure that I am healthy perior to any occasion or event, maintained a personal hygiene and keep my utensils clean to render adequate hygiene in the ceremony

Thanks Mrs Onyeaka, for the assessment

Module 1 assignment
Food poisoning can occur from the different stages of preparing food. Food handling (not washing fruit items from vendors) fruit or food items might have been exposed to diarrhea from the food market, so all fruit items and washable goods should be washed before consumption.

Based on my business production experience and according to an updated list by Findlaw’s team in 2019, there are various levels of food poison that have been identified from the ones mentioned in class and our study.

Few of which are associated with microbes present in food through contact with, food handling, animal contact, heating method, freezing method, etc. Although food safety is everyone’s business, food poisoning can happen at any time. I use white vinegar to wash fruits and sometimes salt to ensure fruits bought from the market will not affect the production of fruit juice especially the total packaging to our final consumer. Also, I ensure we use clean containers, water, gloves, covering of hair to ensure good hygiene.

Food poisoning, also known as foodborne illness, occurs when a bacterium or other organism contaminates food and causes illness in those who eat it. The easiest approach to avoid food poisoning is to use correct food safety techniques, such as freezing or refrigerating your food and fully cooking it. There are some tools available and highlighted by the Nigerian Government although the standard organization of Nigeria and NAFDAC are still trying to update the list for food and drinks bottling industries which I’m sure is a deterrent in the measures put in place to reduce food poisoning and ensure safety.

Module 1 Reflection

I bought food at a cafeteria once, and I felt nauseated after eating the food after washing my hands and maintaining proper hygiene, I am a stalker of washing hands.
I vomited the food and since that time, I stopped buying food from her or just from anywhere. I started noticing the type of water and environment she cooks after I had stooped eating.

Her cooking space/kitchenette, water, water storage drums are everything opposite of hygenic.

Module 1 Provocative Question
If I am given a catering contract for an event, I will ensure hygiene is maintained from food sourcing of raw materials, washing of raw materials, and all to cooking and preparation of the food to serving, presentation and delivery of the food to the consumer.

Assignment Module 1
How do people get food poisoning?
1. Through Bad bacteria
2. Poor personal hygiene (dirty fingers, not washing hands)
3. Bad food storage(food not covered)
4. Dirty Kitchens
5. Expired food
6. Food contamination
7. Undercooked white meat
8. Refreezing food
9. Leaving food uncovered for a long period of time
Why do people get food poisoning?

1. No pest control
2. Rubbish bins not emptied regularly
3. Using hands to pack ice (dirty
4. incorrect food temperature

5. Not washing hands adequately



There has been a case of a kid I witnessed after eating a leftover food, there was serious nausea, vomiting and drowsiness an indication of foodborne illness after he ate the poorly stored leftover food a pre-packaged food.
Nobody should be served a pre-packaged food which has been poorly stored.


a. To ensure hygiene of all the stuff working with me to prevent food contamination.
b. Clean utensils and clean environment where food items and cooked food storage are done.
c. All food items must be washed before cooking and properly kept to avoid bacteria and germs.
d. All cooked foods must be covered prior to serving to all guest at the function.


Food poisoning is an acute gastrointestinal disorder caused by bacteria or their toxic products or by chemical residues in food; it occurs as a results of negligence in processing and storage of food due to the following;

a. Bad bacteria as pathogens
b. Poor personal hygiene as dirty finger nails, dirty hands, dirty uniforms of cooks, smoking in food areas and being sick at work.
c. Poor food storage.
d. Uncovered food exposing it to bad bacteria and germs.
e. Dirty kitchens with unclean fridges,dirty stove tops,and old chopping boards.
f. Expired food such as meat, milk, mouldy bread and cheese.
g. Food contamination eg mixing raw foot with raw meat juices.
h. Under cooked white meat.
i. Refreezing food for long time.
j. Leaving food out for long time uncovered.
k. Incorrect food temperature.
l. No pest control eg flies, cockroaches and rats on food.
m. Rubbish bins not emptied regularly.
n. Dirty ice and leaving ice on the ground.
o. Dirty ice machine.

The negligence to the above vital points exposes man to the danger of food poisoning.

How people get food poisoning

1. Ingesting bad bacteria
2. Through food contamination: mixing raw foods together and cutting foods on chopping board with meat juices
3. Eating food past expiration date
4. Eating undercooked food
5. Incorrect food temperature: Storing and serving
6. Smoking in cooking area

Why people get food poisoning

1. Bad food storage
2. Dirty Kitchen: Dirty stove tops,
3. Poor personal hygiene: Dirty hands, finger nails and uniforms.
4. Eating food left out for a long time
5. No pest control
7. Use of dirty ice
8. Refreezing food
9. Rubbish bins not emptied regularly

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