Food manufacturing

Hazards in Food Manufacturing for Growing Businesses

Are you a new or a growing business in food manufacturing? As your operations and the size of your premises increases, are you prepared for the many hazards in the food manufacturing industry and how to prepare for and manage them, to protect the well-being of workers and the integrity of your products? In this blog, we will delve into some of the prevalent safety hazards in the food manufacturing industry and explore the strategies needed to mitigate these risks.

Slips, Trips, and Falls

One of the most common safety hazards in any manufacturing setting, including food production, is the risk of slips, trips and falls. Spills, wet surfaces and cluttered walkways can contribute to these accidents, which are common, but can be avoided with regular cleaning schedules, proper and appropriately placed signage and employee training.

Machinery and Equipment

Food manufacturing involves complex machinery and equipment, ranging from conveyor belts to slicers and mixers. Inadequate training, lack of maintenance and malfunctioning equipment can lead to serious injuries. Regular inspections, employee training programs and implementing lockout/tagout procedures are vital to prevent accidents related to machinery.

Chemical Exposure

The use of cleaning agents, sanitisers and other chemicals in food manufacturing can pose a significant risk if not handled properly. Workers should be educated on the correct usage of chemicals, provided with personal protective equipment (PPE) and be aware of emergency response procedures in case of chemical exposure.

Ergonomic Issues

Repetitive tasks, poor workstation design and manual handling of heavy loads can contribute to musculoskeletal disorders among workers. Ergonomic assessments, employee training on proper lifting techniques and the introduction of ergonomic workstations can help minimise these risks and improve overall workplace well-being.

Temperature-Related Hazards

Food manufacturing often involves working with extreme temperatures, whether it's hot ovens or cold storage units. Employees should be equipped with appropriate PPE, such as insulated gloves and clothing, and be educated on the signs and symptoms of heat or cold-related conditions or illnesses.

Allergen Handling

Cross-contamination and mishandling of allergens can have severe consequences for consumers, as well as workers. Stringent protocols for allergen segregation, comprehensive training on allergen handling and clear labelling are essential to prevent allergen-related incidents.

Noise and Vibration

The constant hum of machinery and equipment in food manufacturing plants can lead to long-term hearing loss and other health issues. Implementing hearing protection measures, regular monitoring of noise levels and rotating job tasks among workers to reduce prolonged exposure can help mitigate these risks.

Safety in the food manufacturing industry is a shared responsibility, requiring commitment from both employers and employees. By identifying and addressing these safety hazards head-on, small and growing food manufacturing businesses can create a work environment that prioritises the well-being of workers and ensures the production of safe and high-quality food products. Through continuous training, regular inspections and the implementation of best practices, every food manufacturer can make strides toward a safer future for all involved in the industry.

Are You Covered?

Underlining each of the above risks and hazards, of course, is your insurance cover. Does your policy cover you for any incident or eventuality? Are you confident you would not suffer a financial loss should one of your employees make a claim against you, or if a problem was discovered with one of your products?

Ascend can help your food manufacturing business, whatever its size, and whatever your plans are for growth. Contact one of our expert team today on 01245 449060 or by email,

Read more blogs from Ascend:

Manufacturing recruitment challenges in 2024

Managing fire risks in the manufacturing industry

Any questions? Please don’t hesitate to contact one of our team. Mobile: 07842 021430

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