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Safety and Hazards in bakery plants

Safety in Bakery Industry
Major bakery manufacturing industry are biscuit manufacturing , bread manufacturing ,cake manufacturing . These industry are labour intensive as automation is high in cost for bakery industry which these bakery industry avoid .Normal mid size factory would employ about 250 – 500 workers .

Bakeries in India have numerous accidents and injuries which goes unnoticed.
In India we have around small and medium bakery plants which produces various bakery products . Most the bigger manufacturer have outsourced manufacturing from Contract manufacturers , these contract manufacturers are not equipped financially to implement all necessary safety requirement .Hence it is the responsibility of the bigger player to ensure that safety standards are adhered to into these smaller plants . Safety could be further classified into personal safety, fire safety and electrical safety.

Personal safety
Slip, trips and falls major reasons for these are spillages all around production hall. Oil spillages and Water are the common reason. The major accident prone area is premixing where maximum spillages occurs. Slippery Tiles can also cause trips and falls

Flooring could also results in trip and fall as material handling is done through pallet trucks and trolleys in case of un even flooring the tendency of pallets and trolleys would be to upturn which again causes , hence proper flooring is required in these Plants . Kota Stone flooring is the best.

Loading and Unloading Heavy bags of sugar and wheat flour – 50 kg , 90kg bags are loaded and unloaded manually which may cause permanent damage to the Spine . Mechanical conveyors, Bucket elevators, Screw conveyors, Pneumatic conveyors or Bulk Handling system i.e. Transfer of raw material directly from tankers to Silos which eliminates manual loading and unloading.

Noise is another problem which may cause deaf ness among workers as they work continuously in area where you have continuous mechanical sound for example – Mixers , Compressors , Generators ,DG sets , Blowers of Oven , Vibratory sifters , Grinders etc . Ear plugs are the best remedy

Odour - Another important personal health safety issue in bakeries the major problems come from ammonia odour which inhaled in large quantity can cause breathing problem . Scrubber for ammonia can minimize the effect. We can arrange respirators for these workers

Dust is a unique problem for bakery units you can find Flour dust and Sugar Dust in many of bakeries. These may cause breathing problem, asthma etc .These are generated at grinders, sifters and Mixers.Explosions can occur in these sites if proper electrostatic arrestors are not provided .

Heavy Loads of machinery : There are many equipments which may cause accident due to shifting , change over for e.g. molder , cutters , Oven bands , conveyors etc . Forklifts must be employed in such factories.

Cuts and Burns: These are most common minor injuries in bakery plants. Burns at places like oven, boiler etc and heaters of packing machines and sealers .Explosion and fire has been reported from biscuit ovens from many plants. Explosion safety sheets are provided to release pressure building inside ovens.

Cuts happens when operators are not careful and attentive during process of packing of products as it involves knifes and cutters. Maintenance people normally are care less during belts. Burns may happens at pre mixing section where operators has to handle some chemicals like acids . Protective gloves are to be provided while handling hot objects and dangerous chemicals.

Asbestosis Many of these bakery factories roof sheds are made up of asbestos sheets which may cause asbestosis. Sheets to be changed to metallic sheets.

Heat is another source of health risk as workers are exposed to higher temperatures while working near ovens temperatures zooms to 55-60deg c in these zones .Ventilation and fresh air supply to be maintained in these areas.

Insulation is another dangerous material in these bakeries as ovens are insulated through these insulation hence any repair/replacement / dismantling of oven insulation requires precaution s such as workers to wear boilers suit before such jobs

Fire safety
Bakery industry has many inflammable materials which can cause fire hazards. Materials are following

Packaging material - Wrapper, Card board boxes (CBBS) and laminates Storages and waste are main factor of any fire.

Oven s These are main fire hazards in bakery unit

LPG /HSD/LDO – fuel storage tanks are also source of fire hazards. Safety standards have to be maintained as per Petroleum Act.

Electrical loose wiring or short circuit s can be reason for fire hazards.

Every bakery plant needs to put fire hydrant system in the factory premises to handle fire emergency .Normal fire safety inventories like fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, heat detectors should be installed in the factory area.

Electrical safety

Electrical safety requires proper instillation of transformers, cable trays and panels in the factory

Cables needs to be insulated with no loose wiring in the factory. Maintenance of switch gears.

Proper trained electrician to be recruited for maintenance job... Proper safety loops to be designed during switchgear installation hence to protect any major damage to the electrical installation.

Eliminating risky operation through mechanization and automation, taking precaution s like safety guards, Safety interlocking. With safety audits manufacturers can avert major accident.Providing enough fire extinguishers ,exits routes , emergency lights , drills, training and signages can prevent major accidents

Most of the bakery manufacturers do not invest in the safety equipments and other protective equipments for short term benefits but which in longer term may prove counter productive .By adopting food safety programs like ISO22000, EMS ISO14000 , GMP ,HACCP and OSHA 18000 ensures that the companies are following standards procedures for safety of its personnel and property . Consumers should be aware of these standards and encourage those companies which have these standards implemented in their factories.


  1. This is a great post about safety at work place. Often appropriate actions are not taken for ensuring safety of workers in small industries like Bakery. It is imperative that the value of human life is taken seriously and the workers are equipped with personal protection equipments from reliable companies like Arco, Unicare, etc.

  2. Thanks for highlighting safety issue in bakeries which are normally overlooked by concern plant personnel

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