Intermediate Food Safety – my favourite course?

I am getting a much increased demand for Intermediate Food Safety courses just now, and requests for enhanced allergen training and coaching within the course, sadly in the wake of recent tragic events. All our training is bespoke to our clients and their systems, from simple implementation of SFBB, to full blown HACCP plans, and everything in between.

The Intermediate course (I use CIEH accreditation by choice) is my absolute favourite to teach, and has been ever since it was originally launched way back last century (!) In fact I used to write all the exam papers and questions for CIEH from 1996 for a good number of years and into the new millennium. Oddly enough the course (or at least the way I teach it) hasn’t changed a bit in all this time, although of course the content has updated. Its essentially not so much a food safety course, more a supervisory skills course, but set in a practical food safety context. (Incidentally, in health and safety too I was one of the original designers for this middle layer of training).

I always recall the first time I introduced an immersive exercise designed to teach the power of good supervision in food safety, and the risks of poor supervision:

This was before VACCP and TACCP were words on our lips – and before sabotage was a subject we taught in any great detail. On an in-house course, nevertheless, I created an exercise to infiltrate a (real) rival company and ruin their reputation by covert poor supervision – E.coli O157 being our weapon of choice in those days as a ‘new’ and upcoming risk. The delegates took the exercise to heart, producing sample press releases, news items, and evidence for the court case. and some years later I was fortunate to deliver training for the rival company!!! You can guess what happened then????  This was training at the edge of creativity!!!! All done in the best possible taste!!!! (Nowadays I vary the exercise between campylobacter, listeria, allergens etc. dependent on the client – and we introduce VACCP and TACCP as appropriate).

These types of  exercise may be a little controversial, and need skilful handling, but they help the good practice sessions come alive, and you find that your learners either roll out their learning from the course in their own words (always very inspiring), or they show up the sessions you haven’t taught well enough (equally as valuable). And the more creative and slightly safer ideas found their way into some of the original CIEH training packs which are still on my shelf, if not on yours!

Have you got a favourite immersive training exercise you would like to share? Email me on david@davidnewsum.com if you have.

Also, if this is the kind of training you want to bring into your organisation, contact us now for a personalised illustration and no-obligation meeting, on your journey to better food safety management. 07973 549906 or david@davidnewsum.com

Happy training !

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Great free SFBB teaching resources discovered!!!

Oh my goodness, I can’t believe I have missed these:

https://www.food.gov.uk/business-guidance/safer-food-better-business-teaching-resources-for-colleges

This a great set of resources designed by the FSA to help teach college catering students. Obviously they are branded SFBB and use SFBB terminology, so they may have limited use if you are teaching classic HACCP principles. However the scenarios are adaptable quite easily. If you didn’t know about them, take look!

Coming soon on my blog will be some non-SFBB equivalents, keep checking or sign up to the blog for all new blogs delivered straight to your desktop.

 

 

100% pass on our latest intermediate food safety

Why is this such great news? Because 6 of our 9 learners did not have English as their first language, but they worked so hard to learn all the English words necessary just to be able to take the exam. Trainers need to understand just how stressful it is to do this with an unfamiliar language. We came up with some smart techniques to be able to handle the exam, while staying completely ethical and professional. So, to our learners I will say… a very big congratulations, you passed on your own merit and the ability to understand food safety, and I am very proud to have been one of your trainers. It was just as exciting to me as winning a penalty shoot out at the World Cup, but way more important!

Coffee break training

As a trainer,  how do you regard the coffee breaks on a training course?

a. A chance to check your materials etc. for the next session?

b. Time for urgent personal phone calls, messages etc.?

c. A break from the training, to relax, de-stress yourself?

d. An opportunity to mix with your learners semi-socially?

e. A chance to find out from the learners how the training is going?

f. A frustrating and uncontrolled interruption to the training flow?

g. An opportunity for someone to complain about the coffee!

There is no doubt that refreshment breaks can be some or all of these, dependent on the circumstances.

Here are five ideas for using coffee breaks more constructively:

  1. Account for extended coffee break time to a realistic period, bearing in mind that learners may have various needs
  2. Ensure that its not just coffee and tea, but also water, and not just biscuits but also fruit etc.
  3. Encourage learners to step out for some fresh air during the break if practicable
  4. Set a themed informal discussion question related to the training, the venue or the refreshment arrangements (easy for health and safety or food safety courses!)
  5. Organise an activity, set a challenge and build the coffee in as a running break during the activity.

There are lots of other ideas for incorporating breaks into your training – why not let me know what you do?

More pound shop props

Here are my favourite health and safety props to help discussions about power tools as work equipment. They are lightweight and each have action features and noise without need for batteries. They are precious now as I have not found them anywhere since. It makes such a difference to handle and play with these while talking through competence, maintenance, fault reporting, electrical safety, PPE etc. Who needs PowerPoint???!!!

Americans are crazy trainers – its official!

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So I just had to share this photo very kindly send by Beth Brewer from Alabama –  no, its not a Harry Potter thing, its a ‘poop’ hat! She uses this along with many other weird and wonderful props, to make sure that her food safety education programs are exciting and memorable. That’s Americans for you!!!

You can check out her website here:

Food Safety with Beth

Thanks Beth for sharing your poop!