FS1401:                 A Review of Food Safety Practices, Regulations, and Challenges in Lima, Peru

Speaker:              Eliezer Bermudez, MS, PhD, CP-FS

 

This presentation shares results of research conducted in various restaurants and markets of Lima, Peru. It describes the food safety regulation and inspection system in use and identifies some of the major variables and food safety risk factors at play. A brief comparison to the U.S. FDA Food Code is made, providing a discussion on possible approaches to remediation. 

 

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With the globalization of the world and the economic international interactions among countries, it is important that environmental health specialists in the US also learn about food safety issues in developing countries. To ensure access to safe food and preparation of non-contaminated food, other areas of environmental health play an important role. This presentation will be based on a research study done by the author in various restaurants and markets of Lima, Peru. The primary objective of this presentation is to educate the environmental health professionals on the food safety inspection system used in Peru, South America. This system is based on the “Sanitary Rules for the Functioning of Restaurants and Similar Services of the Health Ministry of Peru.” 

This system uses a percentage scale with the following categories: 75% to 100% - Acceptable; 51% to 74% - In Process; and less than 50% - Unacceptable. In addition, a comparison with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) - Food Code (FDA, 2009) system of critical and non-critical violations will be presented. While there are some similarities on the inspection process, there are a number of differences that may increase the risk factors for food safety. The study demonstrated that the lack of a system for temperature control and abuse, plus inadequate restaurant infrastructure are the major risk factors for food safety in Lima, Peru.