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What does a Food Safety Consultant do?

Felicia Dye
Felicia Dye

A food safety consultant generally advises businesses about safe food and beverage handling. The consultant may help these businesses protect public safety and protect themselves by avoiding the consequences of risky operations. The types of businesses a food safety consultant works for can include educational facilities, frozen food vendors, and attorneys.

Even when the utmost care is taken, there can be a number of dangers involved with handling food. This is especially true in commercial situations because food is often transferred to several different parties before it is finally eaten. Each transfer can change or increase the potential risk, which can provide many opportunities for the safety expertise provided by a food safety consultant.

One task a food safety consultant may have is to conduct safety audits. In some cases, she will do this with the full knowledge of the staff. At other times, she may be hired by senior management and may conduct a confidential audit.

Using proper methods to defrost meat is important for food safety.
Using proper methods to defrost meat is important for food safety.

If a business has experienced a certain problem, a food safety consultant may be hired. Her duties, in this instance, may include investigating the problem. She may have to assess the validity of the claims or find the cause. If the problem is ongoing, it may be her responsibility to find or propose an immediate solution. She may also be required to present long-term solutions.

A food safety consultant may give advice on the proper storing of canned goods.
A food safety consultant may give advice on the proper storing of canned goods.

A food safety consultant can work in a preventive capacity. She may be brought in at any stage of a business’ operations to assess risks or identify potential problems. When such situations are uncovered, the consultant’s job can involve working to help establish the policies that will prevent the threat from being realized.

Some food safety consultants have a very interactive relationship with a business’ workforce. Instead of submitting reports and primarily dealing with senior management, they work with the people who work closely with the food and beverages in question. This can include holding meetings with the kitchen staff at a hotel or training restaurant managers how to ensure the food safety of the organizations they run.

Such jobs do not always involve working with the final retailer. Food safety consultants may be employed by suppliers. Agriculture is often produced on a mass scale and a consultant may be able to impact operations in a number of ways. For example, she can help a business be compliant with federal regulations or she may assess problems that may arise from new pest prevention plans.

A food safety consultant may be hired by parties outside of the food business. For example, an attorney may hire such an individual when she can be helpful for a case. Insurance companies that provide coverage to food suppliers and vendors may also find these professional services to be an asset.

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Discussion Comments

Raynbow

I have a friend who was going to school as a dietician, but decided that the job wasn't for him. Since his interests are in making food edible and safe instead of advising people about what they should eat, he decided to go into food safety consulting instead.

My friend has found that this business is great for people who want to help others understand how food safety is relevant to every day life. After all, if the food tastes great but isn't prepared properly and makes you sick, it is not worth eating in the first place.

Rundocuri

It is a trend lately that a lot of people who enjoy cooking and want to make some money doing what they love make their products in a mobile food unit. Taking their cuisine and cooking methods to different fairs and festivals is fun and profitable. It is also a lot less expensive than investing in a brick and mortar restaurant.

However, it is important for anyone wanting to take on this business venture to understand that food safety laws and regulations apply to mobile food units as much as they do to actual restaurant buildings.

It's a good idea for anyone who is ready to invest in a mobile food unit to meet with a food safety consultant. This will help clear up the laws that pertain to the business, and provide valuable information about food safety, cleanliness, and licensing that is necessary when selling food from this type of mobile unit.

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    • Using proper methods to defrost meat is important for food safety.
      By: ra3rn
      Using proper methods to defrost meat is important for food safety.
    • A food safety consultant may give advice on the proper storing of canned goods.
      By: Николай Григорьев
      A food safety consultant may give advice on the proper storing of canned goods.