A Survey of Hygiene Practices of Bakers in Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area of Lagos State, Nigeria
Background: Hygiene refers to the condition or practices of people to maintain or promote good health by keeping themselves and their surroundings clean. Good hygiene practices in bakeries include proper construction and layout of premise, cleaning and sanitation, pest control, hygiene of personnel, storage and waste management. Important as this strategy is in the food industry, little has been reported on the practice of hygiene among bakers especially in developing countries including Nigeria. The aim of this study was to assess knowledge, attitude and hygiene practices of bakers in Amuwo Odofin Local Government area of Lagos state and compare it with the national policy on food hygiene and safety.
Methodology: This was a cross sectional descriptive study with a sample size of 201; simple random sampling method was used for selection of study subjects; information was collected with a standardized structured, self-administered questionnaire and observation checklist. Data generated was analyzed using Epi info version 3.5.3.
Results: Majority (95.5%) of the bakers had good knowledge, 97.5% had good attitude towards hygiene. However, only 44.3% reported good hygiene practices while 68.0% were observed to practice good hygiene. More of the younger bakers (61.1%) and those who had been in the profession for less than five years (53.0%) reported good hygiene practices.
Conclusion: Although knowledge and attitude was good, the reported practice of hygiene was poor. There is need for the licensing agency to conduct regular supportive supervisory visits to all the bakeries in this LGA, enforce hygiene rules, sanction erring bakers and conduct regular trainings on hygiene to protect the health of the growing consumers of baked foods in Amuwo Odofin LGA, Lagos state.
Key Words: Bakers, Hygiene Practices, Lagos