The food vendors training was held at Mlango Kubwa on 25th February, 2016 involving 30 plus food vendors carefully selected from thirteen villages in Mathare Valley in Kenya. The food vendors ranged from the ones who sell: meat products, vegetables, fruits, eggs, fish and the ones selling ready made food products.
The aim of the training was to enlighten and empower the participants with practical skills and knowledge on proper food, premise and attire hygiene, sanitation and safety issues.
Muungano wa Wanavijiji food security programme coordinators mobilized the participants while ILRI and APHRC facilitated the training. The activity was in response to vendors’ own requests for capacity-building and offered a crucial opportunity to support livelihoods and bolster community health across eight villages in Mathare.
The training was organised into five sessions:
- Session 1: Introduced the participants to the Urban Zoo projects which seeks to understand how disease emerge in urban and peri-urban areas of Nairobi
- Session 2: Highlighted the relationship between germs and food safety. Participants were introduced to the adverse effects of germs to health, their portals of entry and that proper hand washing, food preparation and hygiene can prevent most food-borne diseases. This session concluded by demystifying the various myths and truths about food.
- Session 3: Participants were introduced to common food-borne symptoms and how proper PPE, hygiene and sanitation of food, body, containers, clothes and towels prevents most of the food-borne infections. A practical session on how germs spread was also demonstrated using drinking chocolate powder and proper hand washing demonstrated using the Glo-germ.
- Session 4: This session equipped participants with skills on proper premise hygiene, water treatment, storage of perishable food to avoid spoilage. Various modes of contamination and precautions to take when handling meat, eggs, vegetables, and fruits were also illustrated.
- Session 5: The last session equipped and empowered participants on: ways and why they need to improve their product quality; why and how they need to deal with customers and suppliers; advised on promotional activities that they can engage in to improve their product sells; participants were also advised on the importance of innovation, diversification, standardization of recipes and processes.
- Practical sessions: The training came to an end with further practical demonstrations on how to wash equipment, sukuma wiki (kales), and meat.