Food samples from a selection of local food premises have passed the Council’s food safety tests with flying colours overall.
Every year, Council’s Public Health team visit various types of food premises from restaurants, cafes, takeaways, convenience stores as well as high-risk settings such as childcare centres and aged care facilities.
The food samples are delivered to an approved laboratory that runs a variety of tests to identify if the food complies with the Food Safety Standards and is safe and suitable for consumption.
This year the team tested samples from sandwiches, salads, slices, desserts, pasta and ready-made meals.
The testing found that 83 per cent of the 71 samples passed the Food Standards Australia and New Zealand Compendium of microbiological criteria for food. This result has continued to improve over the past number of years in Baw Baw Shire.
Of the 14 samples collected from high-risk premises, only one marginal result came through and was later resolved in a follow-up test.
Follow-up testing of failed samples, including a pasta salad, a chicken sandwich, and a vanilla slice, identified no further problems.
A small number of businesses continue to have repeated marginal results. Marginal results typically point to deficiencies with temperature control, processing or food handling. Council is proactively working with these businesses to review and improve their processes to make sure their food is safe and high-quality.
The food sampling program is an annual requirement of the Food Act 1984 and will continue in 2021.