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Chandigarh: New scheme to check bacterial contamination of eatery and restaurant employees’ hands

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In City Beautiful, there are over 300 food outlets and restaurants located in different parts of the city. Of late, several cafes have come up in the city which also attract a lot of visitors. Employees at all these eateries wil come under the scanner.

The food safety and standard department of Chandigarh will soon launch an initiative under which bacterial contamination of the hands of staffers working in various eateries and restaurants in the city will be checked. The initiative will kick off under a pilot project of the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) for which Chandigarh has been chosen.

Sources in the UT health department said FSSAI has provided a testing machine to the Chandigarh food safety department and the pilot project is aimed at checking the effectiveness of this new initiative.

A senior UT official told Chandigarh Newsline on Thursday that the initiative could play an important role in checking the efficacy of hand-washing practice among the employees of restaurants and food outlets in the city. The testing would be done with the help of a swab, which will be put into the machine for the results. Hands of food service employees which sometimes are contaminated with bacteria could be the reason for the rise in food-borne diseases, said officials.

The machine, called 3m trace hygiene monitor, would also be used to “capture, store and manage data for in-depth analysis”.

According to officials, food teams will visit various restaurants and eateries in the city for this initiative.

In Chandigarh, there are over 300 food outlets and restaurants located in different parts of the city. Of late, several cafes have come up in the city which also attract a lot of visitors.

Food officials, say those who fail the test, would be issued stringent directions by the food department. “This will help us to create awareness among the food service personnel. They would be informed where they stand in the food hygiene which is pretty important for the food industry,” said an official. “All those who fail the test will be issued warnings to improve hygiene.”

Not only food outlets, the UT health department is also planning to visit the schools to raise awareness among children through this initiative.

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