Chemical Hazards

By. Najih - 28 May 2024


Chemical hazards definition refers to chemical substances that are unintentionally present in foods. They can also be naturally present in foods but are at harmful levels for human consumption. When consumed, chemical hazards can cause adverse health effects to humans.


Cleaning solutions

Use cleaning products following label directions. Using excessive concentrations of cleaning products can contaminate food. Always store cleaning solutions separately from food products. Leave them in the original container unless they are being put in a label container that will never be used for food storage. After handling cleaning solutions, wash hands before handling foods.


Pest control should be done when food preparation is not underway. Foods must be securely covered and protected before pesticides can be applied. After pesticide application, all food contact surfaces must be washed and sanitized.

Toxic metals

Many metals are nutrients in very small amounts, but they are toxic in large amounts. The metals that are most frequently a problem in food service are:

Zinc. Found in galvanized containers, can be leached from the container if high-acid foods are stored in them.

Lead. Found in pewter, lead-glazed China, or leaded glass and pottery. These items are not allowed in food service if lead exceeds certain limits.

Copper and copper alloys such as brass. These are found in some pans and piping connections. They may not be used with acid foods with a pH below 6. Examples: vinegar, wine, carbonated drinks, and juice.

Prevention measures

• Prevent cross contamination by proper storage of cleaning chemicals.

• Always store pesticides separately from food products.

• Avoid metal equipment that can leach from cookware into food.


Establishing safe food handling practices increases profitability, reduces legal liability, and promotes goodwill to customers. An eating establishment - that has developed written standards to ensure safe food and that follows documented procedures to prevent food borne illness - can use the reasonable care defense in case it is sued for an alleged food poisoning outbreak.          

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