More than two years after the last election, when both Labor and the Greens backed the scheme, Canberra appears to be no closer to having a 'scores on doors' food hygiene rating system that has proven so successful in neighbouring NSW.
In order to improve food hygiene standards in the ACT a spokeswoman for ACT Health indicated that they were "continuing to explore several food safety operational enhancements and if a decision is made to pursue such a system then ACT Health will work closely with industry and the community to ensure the proposed system achieves its desired outcomes."
In 2011 The Canberra Times reported that ACT laws prevented those businesses from being publicly identified that inspectors had found were too unclean to sell food. While ACT Health publishes a list of the restaurants that are found guilty of breaching food safety standards, it can take between 18 and 24 months between the date of an offence and the conviction appearing on the register in a truly ludicrous situation that virtually leaves Canberrans in the dark when eating out.
To add insult to injury, the list is a register of offences that have been proven in court and therefore not a register of all the breaches that are detected by health inspectors.
Let's hope that the nation's capital finds a system soon that will better inform its people of those eating establishments that do not take the importance of food safety seriously.
Source : The Canberra Times, 17 February 2015