GSC Packaging Discusses Employee Safety with Food Manufacturing

GSC’s Director of Operations, Ed Forrest, recently sat down with Food Manufacturing to discuss the importance of employee safety in dry processing. While food and beverage companies must always be cognizant of consumer safety, Ed points out that the safety of employees should be equally measured and protected. Benefits include increased employee satisfaction, higher employee morale, reduced employee absenteeism and lower workers’ compensation costs.

So what kind of best practices can be utilized to minimize job related hazards? In addition to the numerous safety regulations and codes required of the food manufacturing industry, Ed recommends the following:

  • Facility Layout: Heavy portable machinery can be deadly when its movements are unpredictable to pedestrians. Create a consistent and orderly flow of traffic that designates where employees walk and where forklifts travel. This organization will allow employees to anticipate where and which direction the forklifts are moving, as well as minimize crossed paths.
  • Dust Control: Believe it or not, one of the biggest safety hazards for a dry processing food manufacturing facility is dust. Airborne irritants can cause health problems, coat the grounds to make slippery floors, and can sometimes even be explosive! Prevent the accumulation of harmful particles with a robust dust control system and stringent sanitation best practices. Increase sanitation measures when working with products that have a higher sugar count, conduct a dust control system check every week, and test the dust in your facility to make sure it’s not explosive! Be sure to install dust control equipment that is explosion proof to further protect your employees.
  • Materials Handling: While materials handling is a necessary part of manufacturing day-to-day operations, improper handling can be very hazardous. Prevent unnecessary risks in the workplace by hosting monthly safety meetings for employees. For the complex tools that require licensing, require employees to complete training and renew licensing every year rather than the minimal three year requirement imposed by the industry.

For more tips on promoting employee safety, read the full article on Food Manufacturing’s site.

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