248582 Modifying the behavior of food employees using training materials and methods designed for oral culture learners

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 9:24 AM

JoAnn Pittman , Office of Regulatory Affairs, Southeast Region, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Atlanta, GA
Many factors affect food employees' ability and motivation to prepare food safely including, but not limited to, receiving proper training (Green and Selman, 2005). Research suggests that food employees are predominantly oral culture learners and that training materials and methods commonly used today are contrary to oral culture learner characteristics (Beegle, 2004). The purpose of this project is to improve the effectiveness of training related to the control of foodborne illness risk factors by developing educational materials and methods more appropriate for oral culture learners. Funded through grants and contracts from the FDA's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) and Office of Regulatory Affairs/ORA U, a project team consisting of FDA National Retail Food Team members and Public Affairs Specialists, behavior and communication experts, and over 60 representatives from the state and local regulatory community, industry, academia, and trade and professional organizations, have developed/collected and field tested educational materials (posters, storyboards, videos, audio testimonials, demonstrations, and exercises) designed specifically for oral culture learners. Preliminary results suggest that using stories, sayings, and pictures with vivid examples that allow food workers to feel the impact of a behavior, as well as using interactive demonstrations and two-way communication provided in a focus group format, may assist with motivating employees to change their food safety practices by helping them to understand why proper behaviors and practices are important in preventing foodborne illness. This project provides a unique foundation for improving the effectiveness of food employee behavior modification efforts in the U.S.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Diversity and culture
Environmental health sciences
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Protection of the public in relation to communicable diseases including prevention or control

Learning Objectives:
* Describe the findings of various studies and theories related to food employee behavior * Compare and contrast oral culture from print culture learning principles * Describe FDAs Oral Culture Learner Project and its implications to food safety training in the U.S. * Evaluate your training materials and methods to make them more effective at changing employee behavior

Keywords: Food Safety, Training

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the co-chair of FDA's Industry Outreach Workgroup/Oral Culture Project Team, and as such, I provide direction to the project that the presentation summarizes.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.