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Q. Is it a legal requirement to use plastic gloves when handling raw or cooked food?

No. It is not a legal requirement to wear plastic gloves when handling either raw or cooked food. Proper and frequent hand washing is critical to ensure safe food. Plastic gloves can be used but it is important to remember that gloves can be a source of contamination if certain rules are not followed:

  • Hands must be clean before putting on gloves
  • Gloves must be changed regularly and properly disposed of
  • If gloves are used for certain duties such as cleaning, handling raw food, waste or money, they must always be disposed of before starting another activity

NOTE: A food handler should question if there is any benefit in using disposable gloves for the particular activity before putting gloves on.

See the guidance about Hand Washing and Food Safety and Antibacterial Soap and Antiseptic Wipes for more information.