Main Article Content
Cross Contamination; Food Hygiene; Foodborne diseases; Sanitation; Salads
Street sold foods are a source of inexpensive, nutritious food for many people living both in the urban and rural areas. It is also a major source of income for many people, particularly women by providing self-employment and the opportunity to develop business skills with low capital investment. However, ready-to-eat foods are a source of contamination and can transmit food-borne diseases through those handling the salads. Therefore, a quantitative cross-sectional survey of exhaustively sampled 120 vendors was carried out to assess food safety knowledge and hygienic practices among vendors of vegetable salads in Nairobi County, Kenya. The study established that the majority (60 %) of the respondents were males aged between 26-35 (53 %) and most of them had up to the secondary level of education (73 %). The majority of the vendors (59 %) had been trained on food handling practices and therefore had good knowledge of food hygiene, and practiced good hygiene. The results indicate that even though most respondents used gloves and aprons, some did not practice food handling hygienic practices and this could predispose the salads to contamination. The study indicates that the majority of the respondents had formal education and were trained on food handling practices, and this may have had an effect on their perception of hygiene. However, some of the vendors exhibited poor food handling practices and therefore there is a need to enhance training and law enforcement governing street food vending business.