Will cockroaches in your bread put you in the news? Social media and recent new high profile news stories along with the NSW Government are now naming and shaming venues who fail to meet their obligations to bring food safety to the fore.
In January, Canberra’s largest civil action involving food poisoning commenced. Mayonnaise was found to be the culprit which saw 140 diners fall ill and 15 admitted to hospital. Not only has the buffet style restaurant had to cope with the negative publicity it is also being sued for past and future economic loss and out-of-pocket expenses including ongoing medical treatment by affected patrons.
‘They must be a special case though – couldn’t happen to us, right?’
Wrong. The statistics indicate that this could happen to any food business. In 2010, OzFoodNet (an initiative of the Department of Health and Ageing) estimated that 5.4 million cases of foodborne disease occur in Australia annually and that implicated foods were most commonly prepared in restaurants.
The key thing to remember is that most food businesses have a food safety plan, however there is a big difference in having one and having an effectively implemented Food Safety Program in place.
A a document on the shelf gathering dust does not reduce the risk of contaminated foods causing your patrons to become ill or worse. Ensure your business follows the recommended procedures, keep your records as accurate as possible and maintain a regular training schedule for Food Safety Supervisors and general staff.
How do your food safety practices stack up? Call DWS today to find out how your venue can benefit from a Food Safety Service Review.