Health, Safety and Ergonomics in the food industry

A.Y. 2019/2020
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course aims to provide students with the knowledge related to the "Testo Unico 81/08" concerning health and safety in the workplace in order to provide the necessary elements for the assessment of the equipment in terms of safety together with elements of ergonomics.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course the students will know how to competently analyze the reference sentences in the field of security. Students will be able to compile a safety risk analysis plan and will be able to manage safety-related audits in the workplace as well as being competent in the ergonomic design of equipment and workstations.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Course syllabus
Part one:
The genesis of TU 81/08 starting from Law 626/1994 to date. The influence of European legislation on TU 81/08. Analysis of the consolidated act with particular regard to the operating articles and the sanctions envisaged.
The attitude of the Competent Authority with regard to the jurisprudence on health and safety in the workplace: cases. Ethical aspects and impacts on procurement.
Part two: (Part in accordance with the program provided by the Permanent Conference between the State and the Regions for obtaining the basic training certificate)
Legislative Decree 81/08; Risk concepts; Damage, Prevention, Protection; Organization of corporate prevention; Rights, duties and sanctions for the various corporate subjects; Supervisory, control and assistance bodies
Verification of learning (necessary over these 4 hours to obtain the basic course certificate).
Part three:
The CE marking of equipment: technical directives and solutions. The risk analysis of some machines used in professional catering. Technological choices in favor of machine safety: the Machinery Directive. The concept of harmonized standard.
The legislation for plants (Legislative Decree 37/2008).
Fire law.
The concept of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
The organization of a first aid service in the company according to the T.U. 81/2008.
The regulatory world of safety: from OHSAS 18001 to ISO 45001
The structure of the safety management system in a food company according to the ISO 45001 standard. The concepts of Risk based Thinking and context analysis in an OHSMS.
The certification process
Part Four:
The regulations for the hygiene and safety of equipment for the food sector
The essential requirements of directives and regulations: harmonized standards, presumption of conformity.
The structure of the standards: part of hygiene (hygienic design) and part of safety.
The main risks related to equipment.
Fifth part:
Ergonomics principles: definition, impacts on equipment. The centrality of the operator.
The concept of usability, adaptability, comfort, pleasantness and comprehensibility.
The ergonomic design of the equipment for the agro-food industry sector.
The methods for measuring ergonomics: the OCRA method (OCcational Repetitive Action), the NIOSH method (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health), the Snook and Ciriello method.
The main reference standards for the sector.
Sixth part:
The judgments in the legal field relating to health and safety in the workplace: legal, structural and insolvency elements.
The figures involved: the role of top management.
Examples and interpretations of judgments specific to the catering sector and the food industry
Prerequisites for admission
Basic knowledge of the production process of the agri-food sector: from the primary phase, to the machines and production plants up to the packaging and distribution. It is important that the student is able to contextualize the examples that will be cited during the lessons in order to grasp the peculiarities of the sector and the correlations with aspects related to safety and health for operators and ergonomics.
Teaching methods
Frontal lectures.
During the course, an in-depth study of 4 hours is planned, carried out with an external professional, aimed at obtaining the basic certificate for safety, required by the State - Regions Agreement. This lesson explores the organization of the Health and Safety service according to current legislation (T.U. 81/2008). At the end, an assessment test is carried out which has the purpose of verifying the learning and issuing the certificate.
Teaching Resources
Notes from the lectures
Material (Slides) provided on the ARIEL website of the course
R. Guidetti, A. Vitale - Manuale della sicurezza sul luogo di lavoro in una azienda alimentare - Seconda Edizione, Franco Angeli (Milano), 2018.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The evaluation of the real achievement of the learning outcomes expected by the student takes place by means of an oral interview done with telematic systems.
The following will be evaluated: the critical sense and the knowledge that the student has developed with regard to both the legislative and technical aspects underlying the organization and management of health and safety systems in an agri-food company.
To take the exam it is necessary to register within the deadline set on the UNIMIA platform (
The evaluation is expressed by a vote out of thirty.
The mark is communicated to each individual student by e-mail automated by the university's verbalization system.
Students with SLD (Specific Learning Disabilities) and with disabilities have to contact the Professor by email at least 10 days before the scheduled exam date to agree on any individualized measures. In the email addressed to the teacher it is necessary to put the respective University Services in CC: (for students with SLD) and (for students with disabilities).
Lessons: 32 hours
Department of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences - Production, Landscape and Agroenergy