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Dust concerns settled. Revised Industry Dust Guidance published.

The Federation of Bakers (FoB) has just published a revised Guidance on Dust Control and Health Surveillance in Bakeries (its 'Blue Book') following a comprehensive review.

The industry guidance relates to occupational health, including respiratory exposure to flour and other ingredient dusts and was reviewed out by the FOB Health and Safety Committee (FHSC) which includes representatives from all sectors of the bakery.

The publication, which is available on the FoB website, was last revised in 2008 and has a history going back to the 1980s. The revision is intended to ensure it remains relevant to current legislation and good practice, explained Gordon Polson, chief executive of the Federation of Bakers: "The health and safety of all employees is a primary consideration of all bakery businesses and this guidance is just one important element of that."

The guidance provides information to help bakers and others working in the food manufacturing industry reduce risk arising from employee exposure to flour and other ingredient dusts and assist help employers in meeting their duty of care and ensuring health and safety compliance for their employees. The guidance includes advice on how to assess dust levels in the work-place, outlines a range of practical measures to reduce dust exposure and gives advice on health surveillance.

"The levels of flour dust are in most cases in the UK Very low," Polson told Baking Europe. "However, the industry is working hard to reduce levels even further. The measures that can be taken differs depending on the kind of bakery."