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  October 15th, 2022 | Written by

Implementing AI in Workforce Training Techniques

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Food Safety is considered as one of the most important functional aspects of the food industry; it is estimated that the food industry loses over $110 billion in revenue and productivity due to medical expenses and brand reputation damages caused by food-borne illnesses. However, the industry is also infamous for being one of the most labor-heavy industries in the world, which subsequently leads to the biggest food safety challenge: Food Safety Training. Training all employees within the food industry regardless of management level is essential to allow food safety culture to grow within a business and to ensure that all products manufactured by a facility are safe to consume.

But with all the talk regarding food safety and hygiene training, another important question arises: How does an employer determine what kind of training is important for their employees? The answer is not always straightforward, but it is crucial for employers to keep in mind that basic food safety and hygiene topics should be covered for all employees through on the-job-training or through a classroom set-up; these topics can range from basics like Cross Contamination and Hazard Identification to more advanced topics such as HACCP and ISO 22000:2018 awareness. With the rise of AI or Artificial Intelligence in the Food industry, there are various tools such as Vision AI and Machine Learning which have proven to be effective in improving various processes within a food business, one of the more important ones being food safety and hygiene training.

Before delving into the benefits of AI in the food industry it is prudent to understand: What IS Artificial Intelligence? AI or Artificial Intelligence is an umbrella term used for various kinds of technology which includes but is not limited to: Vision AI, Machine Learning and Text AI. Among the many benefits these diverse sub-divisions of AI can provide food professionals globally, some of them are:

Personalized Training Modules & Integrated Training Experience

When training employees in food safety and hygiene, it is prudent to understand every employee may require different kinds of teaching methodologies to be implemented to ensure maximum effectiveness; but in a company dealing with 1000+ employees, how does one ensure this? The answer to this question is the use of Vision AI: As on-the-job training is the most common form of food safety training today, Vision AI allows employers to create simulations of various real-life scenarios where food safety is at risk and subsequently train employees on how to handle them in real time, with the added benefit of not allowing any customer-facing products to be at risk. If required, this technology also allows employers to create customized scenarios in accordance to the employee skill, thereby allowing said employee to have a fully integrated experience as compared to regular classroom training.

Focused Training Activities & Organized Training Programs

The most common form of food safety and hygiene training is on-the-job training, followed by classroom training; however, one of the greatest challenges faced by any training professional is the creation of a stringent training program and organizing training activities in accordance to topics, all the while ensuring each and every employee, even in large scale companies, is trained. In these instances, the use of AI has created an opportunity for food safety training professionals to create effective training programs that can take into account various factors such as number of employees, management level, training levels and even language. Building on this, creating focused training activities such as on-the-job simulations as described previously, can also be created using Vision AI and Machine Learning capabilities.

Effective Data Collection and Feedback

In an industry that encounters possibly hundreds of food safety risks and/or incidents in a day, collating all the data received on a daily basis into a workable database can prove to be challenging. This is where Text AI comes in: Text AI and other such technologies allow food professionals to store and collate food safety incident data on a real time basis and organize it in such a way that recognizable statistics or data can be extracted from it in a fraction of time. This data extraction, for example, allows food professionals to make accurate predictions in regards to the next big food safety incident to look out for in their food spaces. This kind of data can also be applied to collating customer feedback and generating statistics which may prove helpful in terms of organizing a training program or even help chefs upgrade their menu items.

Building on these aspects, there are various kinds of AI software out in the market that can be used to target food and beverage employees and streamline their training sessions, such as:

Fujitsu’s Computer Vision Model

One of the more difficult aspects of a food safety professional’s job is on-the-job training which needs to be conducted for employees regarding personal hygiene, i.e., handwashing, uniform upkeep, etc.  Predicting these challenges, Japanese IT giant Fujitsu is developing a software designed to observe handwashing techniques of food workers and alert supervisors when an effective handwashing procedure is not being followed. The software also has features such as a physical display monitor demonstrating each step of the handwash procedure as it is being done by a food worker.


Intenseye is a company that uses Vision AI to ensure that food workers are kept safe from workplace and food safety related accidents; one of the more interesting aspects of this technology is the ability to identify whether a worker is wearing appropriate PPE. This technology can be used to monitor food workers in real time, and by extension, be used as a learning tool to demonstrate to food workers what kind of personal hygiene policy aspects are expected out of them, by using real-life examples of their colleagues in question.


A great example of using AI tools to demonstrate hand washing techniques is Pathspot, an AI technology that recognizes the number of contaminants found on a food worker’s hands. This technology can be used as an additional learning tool when training food workers on essential food safety and hygiene aspects such as handwashing, cleaning and sanitization techniques as well.

Thus, it is obvious that technological advancements are an inevitable part of the food industry; the integration of AI technology to aspects of the food industry such as workforce training can help streamline the process throughout a facility, ensuring that all food workers are trained in food safety and hygiene in an effective manner, thereby subsequently giving rise to a healthy Food Safety culture within the workplace, a task that as all food safety professionals know, is notoriously difficult to accomplish. Taking all these factors into consideration, it is thus imperative that food business owners eventually incorporate AI technology into their facilities in order to step up to the place and ensure business continuity in the long run.