Food Hygiene

Summary of implementation of the 5 keys to safer food in Latin America

The WHO Five Keys to Safer Food


Prevention of foodborne disease: Five keys to safer food


“Sometimes very simple messages and measures can have a big impact on health protection. These Five Keys to Safer Food have already contributed to the prevention of foodborne illness and deserve to be communicated more widely.”

Margaret Chan


Unsafe food causes many acute and life-long diseases, ranging from diarrhoeal diseases to various forms of cancer. WHO estimates that foodborne and waterborne diarrhoeal diseases taken together kill about 2.2 million people annually, 1.9 million of them children.

Foodborne diseases and threats to food safety constitute a growing public health problem and WHO’s mission is to assist Member States to strengthen their programmes for improving the safety of food all the way from production to final consumption.

In May 2010 the World Health Assembly approved a new resolution on food safety: Advancing food safety initiatives (WHA63.3). This resolution will be used to update the current WHO Global Strategy for Food Safety.



In response to the increasing number of requests from countries to assist in strengthening their food safety education programmes for the prevention of foodborne diseases, FOS/WHO has developed a Standard Manual on the Five Keys to Safer Food which provides guidance on how to both educate and promote adoption of safe food handling behaviors in different environments, where food are produced, prepared, and consumed.


In the Region of the Americas, trough out a project supported by the DFID Agency the WHO Standard Manual was tested in primary schools at urban and rural areas.  As a result, a technical team comprised of PAHO/WHO technical Officers; Officers from the Institute of Nutrition for Central America  and Panama (INCAP) based in Guatemala with counterparts form the ministries of education and health developed a series of three manuals:  a. A theoretical manual  entitled: “Five Keys to Safer Food”, b) A manual  of activities for teachers on how to keep food safe, and c) a manual for the parents and teachers association on how to formulate a plan for safe food and water at schools.


1 Guatemala:

In follow-up to phase II of the project, the workshops were held in the months of April and may of

training teachers of four schools in the developed contents of the Manual 5 Keys to keep food safe. and use of additional tools. Also, is provided them materials to every teacher and a proposal for the implementation thereof with students over the next 2 months of training. They summarized in table No.1  teachers who were trained in Guatemala project.

Table No. 1

The months of September and October again visited the schools for tests

end caps for hygiene in the manipulation of food to students and teachers, in order to

measure the impact on changes in behaviors regarding the subject. During these visits, teachers

they were parents to give a talk by the content learned 5 keys and

for both, inform parents so that they can at home reinforce what students

they learned in the classroom. Currently test CAPs for analysis and completion data is raising of the Study, as well as final report of the pilot project in Guatemala.


2 Honduras:

The first half of 2007, introduced draft 5 keys to the authorities of theHealthy schools (PES) programme of the Secretaría de Estado del Despacho de la Primera Dama de HondurasSecretariat of State of the Office of the first lady of Honduras,

those who at that time agreed to participate in the process of validation of the tools at centres escolares the program It supports. To follow up on what was agreed, this year received

official communications of Honduras confirming the interest and requesting technical support to initiate the transfer process ESCUELA & DOCENTES TRAINED

E.O.R.M. Meetings, 8 Chiquimula

E.O.R.M. The Bongo, the Estor, Izabal 8

E.O.R.M. Rosario, San Juan, Sacatepeques 11

E.O.R.M. Republic of Colombia, 15 Guatemala

Institute of nutrition of Central America and Panama.INCAP – 2

from the experience.

August held a workshop where as a result of this was achieved 😦to) form a team 5

Key inter-agency with PES, Secretary of education, Ministry of public health officials

World Food Programme, the INCAP and PAHO, who socializarán the internal project of their

institutions as well as they will monitor the process in schools, and(b) the plan was developed for

work to begin the process of implementation of the initiative, which is already running.

The project was developed with the Ministry of education and health, who have reviewed the

Tools gave its endorsement to adapt to the country. Currently ongoing adaptation

tools 5 keys according to the methodology and approach presented by the Curricular design

National basic education of the Ministry of education for its implementation in schools

serviced by PES, still are a total of approximately 16,000 in cyberspace.

In addition, the initiative has been sector health using the materials to train to

women in dining rooms Marcala municipality staff tourism and health in the region

Metropolitan Tegucigalpa.

3 El Salvador:

Was coordinated together with the Regional programme for food security and nutrition for

Central. PRESANCA – start the implementation of the initiative in schools that

they have a school feeding programme in the municipalities of San Fernando and Arambala in the

Department of Morazán,. To this end, the PRESANCA funded the printing of 500

copies of the materials and tools training workshops


The work plan was developed to coordinate the actions of the implementation of the initiative and

July training workshops were conducted in the contents of the Manual.5 Keys to keep

food safe. and complementary tools for teachers in the schools of

the municipalities mentioned above, as well as to the equipment monitoring quality and staff of the

Ministry of health.

During the workshops trained 50 teachers in the

schools, 28 pedagogical advisors team of

Monitoring the quality of the Ministry of education and staff

of the Ministry of health of the Department of Morazán.

Within the activities of the work plan is make a

CAPS study in schools in both municipalities

What are the CAPs Forms validation for to start the next year the study.

Institute of nutrition of Central America and Panama.INCAP – 3

4. Presentation of the 5 keys in Guatemala experience in the V meeting of the Commission

Pan American food safety (COPAIA) within the framework of the 15th meeting

Inter-American ministerial on health and Agriculture (RIMSA):

At the meeting of the COPAIA on 10 June in Rio de Janeiro, Dr. Ludwig Werner Ovalle

Cabrera, Deputy Health Guatemala presented the experience of the pilot project and some

recommendations for cooperation and coordination of actions at national, sub-regional and regional

food safety to implement this initiative. For this purpose cooperation provided

technique for the preparation of the summary of experience and presentation of the same.

5 Edition in the English language of the materials and the pilot project in Guatemala brochure:

Finished editing and diagramming tools 5

Key version in English for use in countries

English-speaking region; as they were printed 1000

copies of the posters and the manual for the School Board.

For transfer of experience to other countries in

Central America and the Latin American region became a brochure

Spanish/English outlining the methodology, achievements and progress of the

Guatemala experience to socialize with other countries to

they may be interested in starting to implement this initiative,

as well as a CD with documents in digital version.

6 Belize:

Be supported Belize sending 200 posters 5 keys as well

as with brochures-summary of the experience, to start in the

2009 the transfer to the country.

From 24 to 26 February, the INCAP attended the workshop. Train the

Trainers Programme on the Five Keys to Safer Food. organized by the

WHO and PAHO country office in the country, which was held in the city

of Belize with the participation of 32 representatives from the Department

public health inspectors of Ministry health MOH, health educators of

Agriculture and tourism in the country officers.

INCAP presented here experience it has developed in Guatemala and Honduras for the

adaptation of this initiative in primary schools, as well as the materials obtained as

product of this experience. Each participant was given a digital copy with tools

in both languages as well as the summary.


Reference: PAHO/WHO- Institute of nutrition of Central America and Panama. INCAP – 1

Report of AVANCES in the REGION CENTROAMERICANA of theINICIATIVE the 5 keys to safer food.


Written by geraldmoy

May 30, 2011 at 2:08 pm