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Health risk in Bakeries

Updated on March 16, 2011

 

Bakeries are not known for Major occupational health risk yet precautions should be taken to protect workers , employees acquiring disease related to their work in bakery plant . manufacturing units should go for OSHA 18000 & ISO 14001 for better work environment and productivity .Consumer should also encourage with their preference for product s which are produced with companies having such certification .

Major areas which may cause certain health risks in bakery are


Flour Dust ,Sugar dust ,Biscuit dust
Flour handling , loading and unloading areas , Vibratory sieves , Manual Dusting during process.Prolonged exposure to flour dust may cause asthma , bronchitis .Similarly in case of biscuit dust and sugar dust while grinding or manual addition of these ingredients .Mask and spillages should be avoided . Automated system for flour handling to be installed to reduce flour dust .


Noise level
Noise level at certain area may cause deafness if workers are exposed to higher decibel levels for longer duration .As per factory act decibels should be lower than 70.0 db .Ear buds or rotation of workers after every 4 hours can help reducing exposure to sound. Periodic maintenance and monitoring of sound level should be implemented .


Odour
Odours of chemical and additives can be harmful for human. These chemicals should be kept in closed container. Worker s can use face mask and gloves while performing task with chemicals


Ammonia
Ammonia is most common ingredients for bakery product but is harm full if inhaled in larger dose . Pungent smell come out the moment ammonia comes in contact ambient temp. Even if presence ammonia vapours are within permissible level in most of the cases it does not mean that we don't take precautionary measures .


Heat
Oven operators have risk of skin disease , breathlessness and other diseases in case of prolonged stay without any precaution .Temperatures are around 50 -55deg centigrade around oven or baking area . Sufficient ventilation system should be installed like exhaust fan , natural ventilation through roof etc .



Silos and Tanks
Raw material silos or sugar or liquid tanks or fuel storage tanks these needs to be cleaned periodically . Workers should take proper precaution while performing this task as toxic gases are formed in these tanks which effects health .



Insulation

Precaution should be taken while handling insulation in bakery plant as these can lead to allergies and skin disease. Workers can wear protective coveralls or boiler suite with gloves while handling insulation . Ointments are also available to remove itching while working with insulation's .


Other areas are related to stress on body part while performing feeding for packing machines or loading and unloading heavier loads in Factory . Proper material handling should be provided for movement from one place to another . Mechanical means should be provided for lifting and moving heavier items in bakery plants .ie trolleys , pallet trucks , electric chain hoist , titling devices etc



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