Survey reveals the effectiveness and challenges of food safety training

13 July 2015  •  Author(s): Victoria White

The third annual global survey of food safety training has been released by Campden BRI and Alchemy in partnership with BRC, SGS, SQF and TSI.


The survey questioned food and drink manufacturers and processors worldwide to identify the needs, effectiveness and challenges of food safety training in the industry. The survey was sent to over 25,000 food manufacturing and processing sites worldwide. The companies surveyed represent a cross section of the industry and ranged in size from under 50 employees to over 1,000 and cover many sectors including cereal and baking, dairy, meats, fish and poultry, and packaging.

The survey showed that there has been an improvement in both the quality and quantity of food safety training since last year. 42% of those surveyed said there had been an increase in the quantity of training and 45% felt the quality of training had improved. With 55% of employees and 45% of managers stating that they undertake less than eight hours of training last year, it’s likely that respondents have underestimated the amount of training they actually receive. For example, trainers often focus on classroom training and not count other learning activities such as peer-to-peer training.

Relevant, current food safety training more important than the cost of the training

Manufacturers and processes cited that relevant, current food safety training is more important than both the cost and delivery method. For many people, work is becoming increasingly technologically mediated, but traditional methods such as on-the-job and classroom training are used more commonly. E-learning and interactive technologies were only used by 35% and 15% respectively and 68% of training records were still held in some kind of paper form; 60% used Excel spreadsheet and just 20% used a learning management system.

However, lack of resources and time are cited as the biggest challenges to effective training.

Bertrand Emond, Head of Membership and Training at Campden BRI said, “The survey provides us with invaluable information which allows us to respond to the needs of industry and develop solutions to the challenges they face in this area. We have recently partnered with TSI to develop a Food Safety Culture Excellence programme which allows a company to get a comprehensive picture of their food safety culture and measure the impact of training.”

To read the full results of the study, please visit

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