Food safety sucks in some S. Aust. day and agedcare centres

Eleven daycare centres were among more than 800 food preparation places issued warning notices under food safety laws last year. aged care sites were also given written warnings in 2014-15 because of food safety concerns.

SA Health data from local council inspections shows that more than 9000 food businesses across the state were checked. The vast majority were given approval.

Health Minister Jack Snelling said under the SA Health Food Act Report in 2014-15, local government environmental health officers issued food businesses with 803 written warnings, 328 improvement notices, 114 expiation notices and four prohibition orders.

“Three businesses were prosecuted and found guilty of breaches under the Food Act 2001,” Mr Snelling said.

These businesses were Champion Bakery at Port Wakefield, fined a total of $171,000; Omega Foods at Hindmarsh ($71,000); and Garam Masala Indian Cuisine Dernancourt ($6660).

Mr Snelling noted that businesses are stepping up to new laws.

“What is pleasing to see is that overall the great majority of South Australian food businesses that were inspected complied with food safety standards,” he said.

SA Health Director of Food and Controlled Drugs Dr Fay Jenkins said the public had an important role to play in alerting authorities to potential food safety issues.

“Councils received 1082 complaints and reports from the public, which resulted in 640 inspections,” Dr Jenkins said.

“Of the complaints, the highest percentage related to staff personal hygiene or food handling, unclean premises and pest infestation.

“I encourage anyone with concerns about hygiene or food safety practices in a food business to contact their council who will ensure the matter is investigated and rectified.

Everyone has a camera.