How to Avoid Food Poisoning in Ships

by OldSailor on January 27, 2009


Incidents of food poisoning in ships are not a surprise. Recently on January 08, at least 340 passengers of MSC Sinfonia, docked in Salvador, Bahia suffered severe vomiting and diarrhea. It was reported that an inspection found problems with the amount of chlorine in the ship’s drinking water and with the storage of some perishable food items, notably mayonnaise.

Ensuring food safety onboard is a team effort and here are some tips to avoid food poisoning in ships:


  • Check goods before taking onboard
    • Source of supply: to be from approved vendors/brands
    • Check for expiry date
    • Do not accept damaged or open packages
    • Inspect frozen goods: to be in hard frozen state
    • Store frozen and chilled goods first
    • Do not store rotten vegetables and fruits
    • Follow FIFO (First In First Out) for using
    • Cold/Cool rooms: Check temperatures regularly and report problems if any
    • Cold/Cool rooms: Check indication lights are working and door seals on closure
    • Cold/Cool rooms: Check internal safety alarms, opening mechanisms operation
    • Use protective clothing to enter cold rooms and freezers
    • Carry goods safely

Food Handling

  • Galley
    • Food contact areas to be kept clean, use right detergents
    • Keep work tops and cooking utensils clean and disinfected
    • Disinfect raw meat,fish cutting boards after use
    • Keep clean: Deck, bulk head, ventilation ducts
    • Secure cleaning gear in the right place after use
    • Follow housekeeping
  • Personal hygiene of Food Handlersfood_safe_temperature
    • Wash your hands with soap in hot running water before you handle food
    • Dry your hands in single use towels or air dryer
    • Trim your nails
    • Be medically fit
    • Wash your hands again after you handle raw meat,poultry,fish
  • Water quality
    • Polluted or contaminated water may taste same, but if used causes sickness
    • Boil water before you use
    • Regularly flush taps that are not in constant use
    • Maintain a log
  • Storing prepared food
    • Store at temperature 8 degree Celsius or less, or 63 or higher
    • Do not expose food items for more than two hours in 8 to 63 degree Celsius
    • Ensure food storing place is free from rats and other insects

Personal Hygiene

  • Wash your handshand_wash
    • before you eat
    • after you eat, drink, smoke
    • after using rest room
    • after blowing your nose
  • Do not eat if you find your food abnormal in terms of taste, smell, color or if there is dirt or foreign objects
  • Before you sip directly bottled drinks or cans, wash the bottles or cans

Here are some interesting video clips on Basic Food Safety and Foodborne Illnesses

Read more on Food Safety from Kansas Department of Health and Environment as pdf.

Post in MarineBuzz on this day a year before:

Chennai Marina Beach to Get Floating Fountains

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