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African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development

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Development of a food safety toolkit for dry common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) In Uganda using a hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP) approach

H. Aber, J Mulindwa, M Lung’aho, F Nyakundi, M Jager, M Ugen

Abstract


Common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L) may be contaminated with heavy metals and
aflatoxins. Cooked beans may also be contaminated with micro-organisms due to poor
hygiene and sanitation practices. Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP),
which is a globally recognised food safety program, was proposed as a suitable program
to minimise/eliminate the risk of contamination. Therefore, the objective of this study
was to develop a HACCP plan for dry common beans in Uganda and an accompanying
food safety toolkit. The seven principles of HACCP as outlined by Codex Alimentarius
were followed to develop a HACCP plan for the dry common beans value chain in
Uganda. A decision tree diagram was further used to identify each potential hazard at
each processing stage and Critical Control Points (CCPs) along the chain. The
identification of the CCPs was further supported by an evaluation of the actual risk and
severity of the hazard. For the CCP identified, reliable control mechanism and corrective
actions were established to fulfill the requirements set by the critical limits to guarantee
the safety of the products. Verification and records systems were proposed to determine
the effectiveness and traceability of the HACCP plan. For identified CCPs, a co-creation
methodology was used to develop the food safety toolkit. This was carried out in four
sessions that included a background of the chain actors’ ambitions to determine the
suitability of the toolkit, assessment of CCPs, expert advice on the CCP and an exercise
to develop concepts for each CCP. From the analysis, fourteen processing stages starting
from land selection to cooking and serving were identified. Out of these, four stages were
CCPs. These were land selection and preparation, storage, post-harvest drying, and
cooking and serving. Hazards at the CCPs included heavy metals, mycotoxins, and
micro-organisms such as S. aureus, E. coli, and Salmonella spp. A combination of good
hygiene and sanitation practices and good agricultural practices were recommended as
control measures against the hazards. To further equip the value chain actors with
mitigation strategies, a food safety toolkit whose usefulness is to give the actors a
systematic means to control identified CCPs was developed. In this regard, the toolkit
and HACCP plan will complement each other. From the study results, implementation
of the toolkit, followed by an assessment of its uptake and impact on livelihoods and
food safety risks is recommended.

Key words: Common beans, food safety toolkit, prerequisite programs, HACCP plan,
hazards, Uganda




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