Occupational Health and Food Safety Risks in Ilorin, Northcentral Nigeria: A Cross-sectional Survey of Slaughterhouse Workers

Ismail A. Odetokun, Ibraheem Ghali-Mohammed, Nma B. Alhaji, Aliyu A. Nuhu, Habeeb A. Oyedele, Saliu A. Ameen, Victoria O. Adetunji

Biblographic citation: Food Protection Trends, vol. 40, no. 4, pp. 241-250, Jul 2020

Volume 40, Issue 4: Pages 241–250

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Occupational health and food safety risks are persistent challenges in food processing settings of most developing countries. This study assessed work-associated injuries and food safety risk perception among slaughterhouse employees. Workers (n = 203) were sampled randomly from five slaughterhouses and assessed with use of a structured questionnaire. On the basis of a numeric scoring method, data on occupational health and food safety risks were evaluated, using descriptive statistics, univariate tests, and a multivariate logistic regression model. The majority (87.7%) reported work-associated injuries, affecting predominantly workers’ hands. About 17% of workers reported injuries on >3 body parts. About 25% of respondents had inadequate knowledge about zoonosis and pathogen spread. Respondents had not been exposed to training on safety at work or enrolled in occupational health services. Scores on a test of knowledge of food safety risk ranged from 0 to 10, with 87.2% of participants obtaining unsatisfactory scores. The use of PPE (OR = 9.0; 95% CI: 3.5–22.9; P < 0.001) among workers tends to have a positive influence on practices that reduce food safety risks. Slaughterhouse workers in the Ilorin metropolis have a low risk perception with regard to occupational health and food safety issues. These findings could stimulate the development of policies and interventions to mitigate occupational health and food safety risks in Nigerian slaughterhouses.

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