|Reports & Publications - Annual Report 2001
Scientific Approach in Food Safety
On a yearly basis each food premises is accessed and evaluated to determine the potential risk they have to cause a food borne illness. All food premises are assessed into one of the following risk categories: high, medium or low risk. High-risk premises include full menu restaurants and institutions such as a hospital and nursing homes. Medium risk premises are establishments such as bakeries. Low risk premises are establishments such as convenience stores. The frequency of inspections carried by public health inspectors, on an annual basis, is determined by the assigned risk. A high-risk premise receives more yearly inspections than a low risk premise due to the potential of risk to cause food borne illnesses.
All high-risk food premises receive at least one Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point audit (HACCP) per year. The purpose of a HACCP audit is to ensure that food preparation processes are done in such a way as to eliminate or reduce illnesses caused by microorganisms.
A HACCP audit is normally conducted on one food item from the food premises menu. During a HACCP audit the public health inspector will follow the menu item through its preparation process until the time that it is actually served to the public. During the audit the inspector will check cooking and storage temperatures, employee hand washing frequency and general sanitation of the food premises. The audit is a scientifically proven process that is carried out by public health inspectors in ensuring that the public is receiving safe foods from all our food premises.