Beating the bugs

On Tuesday 23rd July 2013, SFPQ ran a Listeria workshop with members of the Benchmark Butchers Community in Toowoomba.

This 1 day workshop provided practical information about Listeria and other bugs; the sources, pathways and key controls used to minimise the contamination of ready-to-eat foods, as well as exploring verification methods and procedures.

It also covered aspects of validating a Listeria proactive management plan for each business and the microbiological tools used in testing.

The practical nature of the workshop meant that participants were also given some handy tips on how they can be more proactive in minimising contamination. Some of these tips included:

  • The impact steamers might have on the cleaning of equipment
  • Bug growth and controlling the elements using microbiological tests
  • Training staff in proper cleaning procedures and personal hygiene to reduce cross contamination
  • Ideas for separating product

SFPQ will be incorporating some of the points discussed at this workshop into the upcoming annual visits to all our retailers. This will provide a chance to discuss the business's practices and processes in minimising the risk to consumers.

SFPQ will also provide a number of food safety resources to meat retailers on topics such as preventing cross contamination, handling ready to eat meats and cleaning procedures.

SFPQ also intends to repeat a series of workshops on Listeria in the coming months.