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Names of “clean” food establishments to be made public in July

By Ministry of Health

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This “German roach” was discovered in someone’s lunch at a Soufriere restaurant on Wednesday, April 8, 2015.

PRESS RELEASE – Food Safety is the scientific discipline describing handling, preparation and storage of food in ways that prevent food-borne illness. This includes a number of routines that should be followed to avoid potentially severe health hazards.

The Food Safety Unit within the Environmental Health Department in the Ministry of Health, Wellness, Human Services and Gender Relations, conducts yearly inspections of food establishments to ensure compliance with food safety standards under the Public Health Act Chapter 11.01. The unit conducts island wide inspections of food establishments including, restaurants, hotels, grocery shops and the like wherever food is prepared or processed.

With elevated levels of Gastroenteritis experienced in the earlier part of the year, the Environmental Health Department has implemented a strategy to ramp up compliance levels for food establishments.

This July (2015) the department plans to publish a list of compliant food establishments who meet or surpass the 80% and over requirement under the public health act in the St. Lucia Gazette.

Sementha Tisson Environmental Health Officer attached to the Food Safety Unit says this measure is intended to do two things, ” In that way the clients or customers are aware of the business places who have met the standard set by the Public Health board. Another reason is that the non-compliant establishments will view this as some form of information to improve their standard because they themselves would want to be published on that list.”

Tisson noted that the her department will work with the non-compliant establishments up to a point. “If they refuse to be cooperative what would happen is they would be sanctioned to the public health board where they may be granted additional time or they will be asked to cease operation.”

Tisson

The Environmental Health Officer pointed to some of the requirements for compliance which include, separate sinks for handling meats and vegetables, separate washrooms for staff and clients, a hand washing sink, personal hygiene with wearing of hairnets and proper attire, tidiness of fingernails as well as general cleanliness of the work environment, among others.

“We have seen light as of a month ago. The Public Health Board has been very active. They have been sanctioning persons who are not compliant to meeting and we are seeing a difference. So the public can rest assured that things are going to get better.” Tisson remarked.

To the general public Tisson stated that ultimately the power lies in their hands with the choices and decisions they make as to the food establishments they patronize. “We have given them the information. They will have a list of compliant food establishments so ultimately it’s their decision.

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26 comments

  1. If we can get past all the borbol, simply put a grading system to be posted near the entrance doors of eating places. Oh my! Some people cannot read.

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  2. Do u know why vans on the side of the road make it. Well becuase theres no rent no water and no toilet. So i dont know how 3 sinks fits in. To meet these standards theres a cost. But all said the way food is handled here is a disaster. Even hotels. Every food place will fail. I am sure even the red food chain will have issues and they are the best.

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  3. About time!

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  4. "We have given them the information, we have given a list of compliant establishments so it's their decision" BULLSHIT!!
    If the place is not on the compliant list then shut it down. this statement is sending a message of it's ok NOT to be compliant.

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  5. Good initiative lets see how many health officials will compromise for a free meal daily.

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  6. Regular documented visits from pest control services must be included on the list.
    **Insects must be taken off the menu once and for all.

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  7. well it looks like 99.99% of eating establishments will not make the list.
    a. separate toilets for staff and patrons..most don't even have a toilet.
    b. separate sinks for meats, veges and hand washing .. 3 sinks.
    c. clean fingernails.. what about the long fake nails that can easily fall into the port while cooking.
    trust me the list goes on.

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  8. About time St Lucia get in line . We have too many smart people , and take too long implementing laws in order to protect our citizens and visitors .

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  9. Good news, but how do you make the list, have all food establishments been assessed by Environmental Health?

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  10. I think the list should be of no-compliant ones and the department should have the power to shut down an establishment for grossly missing the mark.

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  11. Concerned Seafarer

    Why in the Gazette? I am sure that nobody will read the Gazette to decide where to eat. Do compliant restaurants not have to display a Certificate?

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  12. i'm still trying to get past the yearly inspections. YEARLY??? no, it should conducted quarterly or bimonthly at least. i understand we all have to start somewhere, but hopefully u'll elevate to inspecting these sites more frequent.

    and secondly, dont discriminate. posh restaurants/establishments needs to be thoroughly inspected just as the malaway ones. st lucia lucky they not like the states where reporters just ambush u in their restaurants ans ask u to explain themselves lol. i look forward to ur report.

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  13. Don't name the good one name The bad one first , 2 sink most places have one , total wast of time

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  14. TO EAT SAFE FOOD, OR NOT TO EAT UNSAFE FOOD,THAT IS NOT THE QUESTION.

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  15. This "list" is bullshit, people will still buy from restaurants that don't make the list

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  16. keep your culture!!

    my grandma use to say watch what you eat watch what you drink and careful where you sleep my boy thank you granma for the words of wisdom miss you love you!!

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  17. What do you want with your rice? how about some stewed roach.its a little spicy but extremely delicious.Man this turn my stomach.

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  18. All food establishments in St.Lucia should be made HACCP compliant.

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    • SO THAT THE HACCP CONSULTANTS CAN MAKE MONEY WHEN THEY PROVIDE THE TRAINING REQUIRED TO MAKE THE FOOD ESTABLISHMENTS HACCP COMPLIANT.

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  19. That's nonsense the authorities should be shutting down these establishments until they meet the standard.

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  20. Good move-it's about time!
    But nothing beats a home cooked meal.

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  21. Please make sure from the biggest to the regular small food prepares are being sanitary our people shouldn't have to choose between eating or being sick so leave no stone unturned when it come to the publics health Ms.Tisson

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  22. This is long over due and i well this initiate. However the department,should the same with the Hair Salons and Hair Dressers as well can they fall under their jurisdiction.

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    • This is long overdue and I welcome the initiative,however the department should also do the same with the Hair Salon and Hair Dressers, as well cause they fall under their jurisdiction.

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  23. I wonder how many Chinese restaurants will make it

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