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Positive Activities for Young People Team Leader, Luton Borough Council
Food Safety Consultancy
Food Safety inspections and sampling
How can RSA help me?
Local Authority Style Inspections.
These are short inspections of your food business that concentrate on identifying those failings in your business that are not compliant with food safety legislation. With scores on the doors becoming increasingly important to the consumer a high star rating may mean the difference between enticing customers through the door and putting people off.
When the Environmental Health Officer from your Local Authority conducts their inspection, they will issue you with a star rating which is then yours for up to 18 months. Can you afford to have a low rating for that long?
Our Environmental Health Practitioners can conduct the same style of inspection after which they will use the same risk rating scheme and star rating scheme used by your Local Authority so that you know the likely rating you are able to achieve. After the audit we will then issue a local authority style letter detailing any deficiencies found.
You can then take steps to improve or have the peace of mind that you are able to maintain your higher rating. You need not take the chance again.
Fees are worked out on your existing star rating from the local authority.
RSA is able to conduct routine food sampling to ensure compliance with national standards for microbiological criteria. This can form part of a regular food safety audit or be conducted on request by catering management. For example, there might be a requirement to randomly monitor food handling practices, to objectively ensure that they are not contaminating food.
Food sampling can also be conducted at short notice in response to food poisoning allegations and foreign body investigations. Full microbiological or material analysis at can then be provided at reference laboratories.
- Upon request as part of an investigation into a food poisoning allegation.
- As part of an audit or inspection (with the visit being either announced or unannounced, depending upon your preference).
When food samples are examined the results are interpreted as one of three grades of microbiological quality and these are detailed below:
- Satisfactory - Food which is of good microbiological quality and therefore the numbers of bacteria found were relatively low or not detected in the food.
- Borderline - Food that has a borderline limit of microbiological quality and therefore the numbers of bacteria detected were higher than expected. A review of food handling procedures is necessary to ensure that safe food is produced.
- Unsatisfactory - Food with relatively high numbers of bacteria and indicates a problem with food hygiene and handling procedures. A review of working procedures must be conducted.
- The Aerobic Colony Count (ACC).
- Escherichia coli (E.coli) including the E.coli (O157) strain.
- The family Enterobacteriaceae
- Staphylococcus aureus
- Clostridium perfringens
- Bacillus species and specifically Bacillus cereus
- Listeria species, especially Listeria monocytogenes
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