Both references can be accessed by clicking on the links above.
The Canberra Times article indicated:
One study conducted in California and Arizona found most shoppers did not use separate bags for meat and vegetables, did not wash reusable grocery bags, and often stored them in car boots, resulting in the growth of bacteria.
“If individuals fail to clean their reusable bags, these bacteria may lead to contamination of the food transported in the bags. Such contamination has the potential to lead to health problems and even death,” the paper states.
Focussing on a plastic bag ban introduced in San Francisco in 2007, the paper then compares the instances of emergency hospital admissions and deaths for food-related illness across counties with and without plastic bag bans, as well as across time periods before and after bans are introduced.
“We find that both deaths and ER visits spiked as soon as the ban went into effect,” the paper concludes.
In short, the article was referencing the importance of washing ALL food contact surfaces that are reused.
There are also some bacterias that are environmental so even if the produce you have purchased is in a bag it may not be protected…..
To protect consumers, the Food Standards Code has specific references in Standard 3.2.2 that relate to Single Use Items to prevent potential contamination.
Maxpak Australasia, a HACCP Certified food grade packaging supplier have a great range of single use biodegradable bags that are great for the environment AND as a single use item, great for managing the safety of the foods you serve.
The article was on the NSW Food Authority Name and Shame website and indicated the number of businesses that had appeared on the site, including references to the businesses that had appeared on multiple times.
I will post the article online once I receive the electronic copy of the article, however if you can read the online version of the Sydney Morning Herald article.
Staggering that 1 in 10 business can be listed, and some offended on multiple occasions, however at The Gourmet Guardian we prefer to focus on the positives and recognise the 90% of food businesses that are NOT on the list.
The NSWFA through their local council Environmental Health Officers also have a Scores on Doors program highlighting the businesses doing a good job.
So keep an eye out for the NSW rated 5 star businesses and those that have HACCP Programs in place.
We have multiple HACCP Certified clients in NSW. We will shortly be publishing a list of businesses we can recommend.
In Denmark, a world renowned 2 star Michelin Restaurant caused food poisoning for 63 people.
As recently reported by the ABC news Danish Food Safety officials ordered a cleanup and better food handling at Noma, one of the world’s top restaurants with menu costs up to 1,500 korner ($260) and where table reservations often must be made months in advance.
The clean up was ordered after more than 60 people fell ill with viral gastroenteritis from eating at the two-star Michelin eatery that has also hit top spot three times in the world’s best restaurants list in Restaurant magazine, highlighting how important Food Safety is no matter how profound you’re in the restaurant world.
The 63 infected people ate at Noma between Feb 12 and 16, according to a food safety report based on an inspection of local restaurants and food retail companies a week later. Restaurant manager Peter Kreiner apologized for the incidents and said they were trying to track the source of the infection with officials.
Noma, which opened in 2004, is widely known for its chef Rene Redzepi who relies on fresh, locally sourced products, from moss and snails to sloe berries and unripe plums. The restaurant has been credited with redefining Nordic cooking and receives thousands of reservation requests every day.
This article puts into view just how easy it is for the unexpected and unthinkable to happen. Could this happen to you and your business? Are you implementing all of the safe food handling practices needed to ensure the only way your business will end up in the news is for good reasons?
On the 4th November 2011 Food Standards Australia New Zealand, the Government body responsible for Food Safety guidelines and legislation issued warnings against consuming raw apricot kernels. The raw kernels are often used as a cancer treatment or preventative cancer supplement.
The following information has been reproduced with permission of FSANZ:
“Food Standards Australia New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Steve McCutcheon today warned consumers against eating raw apricot kernels following the discovery of high levels of a naturally occurring toxin in some products available in Australia.
There are different types of apricot kernels, some of which contain high levels of the toxin that can release cyanide into the body when eaten. Adults eating as few as four of these kernels a day could become very ill – children should not eat any.
Testing of a number of raw apricot kernels by state and territory health authorities found they contained high levels of the toxin that can release hydrocyanic acid, a cyanide compound, in the gut. These products are currently being investigated and a recall is occurring. The products have been sold nationally on-line and at some health food stores.
While some raw apricot kernels are promoted as an alternative therapy for cancer treatment, the Cancer Council of Australia has published a position statement that cautions consumers about using alternative therapies, including laetrile (apricot kernels).
If you have recently purchased the recalled raw apricot kernels you are advised not to eat them. Return the product to point of sale for a refund or dispose of it safely out of the reach of children and pets. More information (including individual state health authorities) about this recall is available on the Food Standards Australia New Zealand website.
Anyone who has eaten these products and is concerned about their health should seek medical advice.
Apricot Kernels are also sometimes used to assist jams to thicken, however FSANZ has indicated that fresh and dried apricots, apricot juice and jam are not affected.
Gavin Buckett Food Safety Expert & Former Apprentice Chef of the Year
My name is Gavin Buckett and I have over 10 years experience in this industry and have also practiced as a chef. I have also had the honour of being named Victorian Apprentice Chef of the year. These years of experience mean that I live and breathe food safety.
With friendly, cost effective and practical solutions I will empower your staff to do the right thing around food safety. I will help you put in place systems to ensure your peace of mind in this area.