DNA hygiene for kitchens: Students’ thumbs up to hygiene

Thursday, 17 November 2011 - 8:00am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA
Ghatkopar’s Somaiya College spruces up its canteens after attending DNA Hygiene for Kitchens workshop.

Hygiene can go a long way in improving the quality of food.
The canteen at Somaiya College, Ghatkopar, rediscovered this after implementing more hygiene measures. The change is noticeable, especially on the students’ faces.

After participating in the DNA Hygiene for Kitchens workshop, the college held a session on its campus so that colleges from central suburbs would be aware of hygiene norms.

The canteen, which has always taken extra care in hygiene, has now spruced up its cleanliness measures.
When DNA revisited the college, it saw a difference in students’ approach after implementing hygiene measures in its four canteens and two hostels’ mess.

“We have always been alert about hygiene. However, after attending DNA workshop, we have started implementing a lot more measures in our kitchens,” said Sundarrajan TS, manager, student affairs, Somiaya College. “We have seen a difference in the students’ approach towards canteen food. Students are now satisfied with the food offered at canteens.”

The cook in canteens on the Somaiya campus has been asked to wear headgear to prevent food contamination. All food items are covered.  “We have stopped using steel plates to cover food after learning at the workshop that the plate if not overturned while covering food, can cause contamination. We use polythene wrappers instead,” Sundarrajan said.

Separate wipers are used for cleaning kitchen platform, tables and utensils. “With the implementation of hygiene measures, the quality of food has improved. Students can enter the canteen to for themselves the measures we follow,” he added.

The college has been conducting periodical medical check-ups for the canteen staff. “We have a clause in our contract which asks canteen managers to take responsibility of medical check-ups of canteen staff every three months,” said Sundarrajan.

The college is planning to have a committee to keep a continuous check on canteens after training the staff on hygiene.
And students are happy with the change. “As our college canteen serves only vegetarian food, there is no chance of mixing vegetarian and non-vegetarian food and which reduces chances of contamination. Ceanliness has not taken a backseat,” said Pramit Ghosh, second year PG marketing student of the college. “We have seen a difference in the canteen, mainly in terms of cleanliness.”

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