Sydney’s restaurants to face greater food safety scrutiny over summer months

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 21st October 2008

The NSW Government has launched a major crackdown on food outlets across Sydney’s CBD in the lead up to the hectic summer period, Primary Industries Minister Ian Macdonald advised today.

“A joint taskforce has been formed between the NSW Food Authority and Sydney City Council,” he said. “Food Authority inspectors are already out there visiting outlets in the CBD in a series of unannounced inspections – this will continue for the next few months.”

“The vast majority of food outlets are doing the right thing and putting the public’s health first, but the message is clear to those who aren’t following the rules: you need to clean up your act or you’ll find yourself fined or in court,” Minister Macdonald added.

“Food safety is an issue this Government takes seriously – we want 100% compliance.

Minister Macdonald said the action follows new laws empowering councils as food safety enforcers as well as new “name and shame” laws allowing the NSW Food Authority to publish food law violations on its website.

More than 175 premises are now listed on the Name and Shame website.

New premises to go up this week included:

* A Warringah premises fined $1980 for failing to maintain a clean premises, failure to store food in a way likely to protect it from contamination and failure to maintain equipment in a clean and sanitary condition.
* A Darlinghurst sushi outlet fined $330 for failure to keep the premises clean.
* A Sydney CBD Pizza Hut fined $1320 for failing to take all measures to eradicate and prevent harbourage of pests and for not providing warm running water to wash hands.
* A KFC outlet in Riverwood fined $1320 for failure to maintain clean premises.

“The information published on the website gives the people of NSW a choice, while giving businesses the added incentive to do the right thing,” Minister Macdonald suggested.

“Food business found to be in breach of laws may face a range of sanctions ranging from a warning letter to prosecution, with fines of up to $110,000 for individuals or imprisonment for two years or both, and $550,000 for corporations.”

The Food Authority has also set-up a helpline to allow members of the public to report suspected unsafe food handling practices (1300 552 406).