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CAFIA summer inspections: bacterial contamination detected at 40% of ice for beverages and ice creams

08/06/2019
 

Within regular inspections of seasonal assortment, the inspectors of the Czech Agriculture and Food Inspection Authority (CAFIA) focus, inter alia, on checking quality and safety of soft serve and scooped ice cream and ice intended for beverages offered by public catering premises. Results of current inspections (carried out by 31st July 2019) showed that 40% of assessed samples of ice for beverages and 37% of samples of soft serve and scooped ice cream failed to comply with requirements of legislation.

Results of inspections carried out this year as well as in the previous years show that a significant part of the operators still underestimates risks associated with negligence of hygiene procedures during production, storage and sale of the assortment in question as well as related violation of hygiene limits for presence of microorganisms.

This year, CAFIA inspectors have been completed assessment of 47 samples of ice for beverages so far and out of this number, 19 samples (c. 40%) failed to comply with health or hygiene limits. Occurrence of bacteria Escherichia coli, Clostridium perfringens, entercoccus, coliform bacteria and bacterial colonies were the assessed parameters. During inspections in 2018, 47% of assessed samples failed to comply with requirements of legislation compared to 45% in 2017 and 38% in 2016. Underestimation of hygiene practice during production of ice and disinfection of ice makers were the main causes of non-compliant detections.

In 2019, CAFIA inspectors have been assessed 131 samples of soft serve and scooped ice cream so far and out of this number, 47 samples (c. 37% failed to comply with hygiene limits). Laboratory samples confirmed number of colonies of Enterobacteriaceae exceeding the permitted limit. During the inspections in 2018, 30% of samples failed to comply with legislation whereas 26% failed to comply in 2017 and 28% in 2016. Poor sanitation of the equipment for the production of ice cream as well as using of contaminated raw materials, which are often assessed only visually by food business operators could be regarded as the main causes of non-compliant results. Also insufficient instructing the staff could play its role.

The inspectors banned the use of the equipment on the spot at the premises were non-compliant samples were taken (e.g. ice makers, ice cream machine and other tools), they also ordered the operators to carry out sanitization and microbiological analysis in an accredited laboratory. The equipment can be used again only after compliant result of the analysis.

CAFIA will initiate an administrative procedure on imposition of a fine with the operators in question.

 

Article by: Mgr. Pavel Kopřiva – CAFIA Spokesperson, phone: +420 542 426 633