Factors Affecting Hygiene and Food Safety among Restaurants in Karen, Nairobi County, Kenya
By Kabue Esther Njeri (HPM-2-0102-12) & John Kahuthu Gitau
The restaurant food sector has experienced significant growth in the past few decades due to population growth and rapid urbanization. Despite the economic benefits of the sector, it has been recognized as a potential hazard to public health when food is not well prepared. The objective of this research is to examine factors affecting hygiene and food safety among restaurants in Karen, Nairobi County. It also seeks to establish measures to be taken into account to improve food safety in restaurants in Karen, Nairobi County. Quantitative research was conducted through the self-administered survey and a total of 100 questionnaires were distributed based on the cross-sectional study. Quantitative data collected through questionnaire and observation checklist were analyzed using descriptive statistics in form of means, frequency counts, percentages and correlation. Qualitative data collected through questionnaires and interview was organized into themes and sub themes as they emerged in an on-going process. The findings of the study showed that there existed factors affecting hygiene and food safety among restaurants in Karen, Nairobi County. The data collected established that there existed a strong positive relationship between environmental hygiene, Personal, kitchen and Food hygiene and waste disposal in most restaurants within Karen, Nairobi County. It confirmed the urgent need to examine the food health curriculum at University level and diploma training level to improve relevance and competence. It further confirmed the need to ensure the Kenya hoteliers Management Institute adequately and effectively trains chefs and relevant personnel in hygiene and food safety as current practices were wanting. In addition the findings suggest that restaurants in Karen Town do not adequately follow safe food hygiene and manufacturing practices or processes. This was so significant from the levels of bacterial food counts in most samples. However, the staff surveyed acknowledged that food contained bacteria that can present microbial hazard if poorly handled in the kitchen. The study recommends that there is need to educate the management of the restaurants on systematic preventive approach to food safety implementation.