Safety in dairy plants needs to go beyond the subject of food safety if a plant wants to run efficiently and effectively. There is a lot of talk about food safety, but what about worker safety? Issues like fall protection and other safety training need to be emphasized.
Nearly 3 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses were reported by private-industry employers in 2012, resulting in an incidence rate of 3.4 cases per 100 equivalent full-time workers, according to estimates from the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The rate is even higher for dairy manufacturing. Are dairy plants more dangerous? Yes, according to the same survey. Dairy product manufacturing has more incidents of cases with days away from work, job transfer or restriction than overall manufacturing. See the table on page 58.