Evaluation of basic knowledge on food safety and food handling practices amongst migrant food handlers in Peninsular Malaysia

Pee Yee Woh, Kwai Lin Thong, Jerzy M Behnke, John Lewis, Siti Nursheena Mohd Zain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study was aimed to measure the basic knowledge on food safety and food handling practices among migrant food handlers as these information is scarce in Malaysia. A cross-sectional study was conducted face-to-face amongst 383 migrant food handlers from three major cities in Peninsular Malaysia through questionnaire. Socio-demographic information of all respondents was collected. Questions on food safety knowledge (i.e. food cleanliness and hygiene, symptom of foodborne illnesses and foodborne pathogens) and food handling practices were assessed. The compiled data were analyzed by using the Statistical Packages for Social Science (SPSS) 16.0. Overall, migrant food handlers had poor level of knowledge on food safety with an average food handling practice. Significant effects were observed between respondents’ food safety knowledge and socio-demography (country of origin and educational level) and two factors namely; respondents’ nationality and attendance at food training programs showed significant associations with their food handling practices. Multiple logistic regression analyses revealed that attendance at food training programs was a significant and independent predictor of the respondent’s food handling practice. The study’s findings highlighted issues with regards to the extent of knowledge acquisition on food safety and hygiene by migrant food handlers. Therefore, this warrants improvements not only in the better delivery methods of training modules but also tight enforcement of attendance at the programs by the respective authorities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-73
Number of pages10
JournalFood control
Early online date24 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016

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