Handwashing For Life®, for its 25-year history, has been funded by its Leadership Forum Members, working together in the interests of public safety. We are forever grateful to them for their mission-critical contribution in establishing Handwashing For Life’s body of knowledge. This resource of Best Practices lives on to help operators seek, find, and understand their unique risks in preparing and serving safe food for the away-from-home diner.
In January 2022, Handwashing For Life was invited to Join the Center for Foodborne Illness Research & Prevention (CFI) with them potentially becoming the stewards to further the science of hand hygiene. The philanthropic gift by Handwashing For Life (HFL) opened an alternate path to develop a sustainable organization. That option is on hold.
Handwashing For Life® is continuing its mission with these two funding revisions:
Budget-shared research projects, the first of which has been announced and funding is in progress. Inquiries are welcomed.
Update business structure as a nonprofit to become eligible for donations and grants.
Life’s simple habit of washing hands when they are dirty is well established. But when they appear clean, the would be/should be/must be handwasher is at best skeptical, at least about the number of handwashes required on a shift. Training budgets are increased regularly but without a sustainable behavior change. The fabled signs are cranked out and installed: “Employees must wash their hands before returning to work”. Looking at the statistics on norovirus outbreaks, handwashing in foodservice remains dangerous to the diner, the staff, and to the value of the brand.
Handwashing For Life’s first budget-shared research will address two missing definitions.
- What is a clean hand?
- What constitutes a handwash?
It’s hard to imagine that these two questions remain largely unanswered, particularly considering the related volumes written by universities, the profusion of training alternatives, and the 181 pages in The Model Food Code’s 30th edition.
These questions are answered every day by our operators but without the evidence, without the science to back them up. This leaves their business exposed to unnecessary risk.
Most every food-prep station has differing risks. Deboning raw chicken, salad prep and plating deep-fried meals, all call for different actions, as does post-restroom use. Where do we need gloves or hand sanitizer? How long should we wash, considering a doctor prepping for surgery, scrubs hands for up to 6 minutes – 360 seconds, 20, 15 or 10 seconds?
Where is the data?!?!