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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Food hygiene coming out of the cupboard

A reader-Fitzroyalty, a blog on matters of local interest in the Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy - is doing battle, with some success with the local council over access to food hygiene inspection reports. Another blog, Lifehacker, gives an overview of available information on such things around the country, but I wouldn't make much of any "come-clean" (sorry) performance other than NSW-WA and SA are only publishing in a convenient form, conviction information already in the public domain. Of course even that's better than the other states.

The Sydney Sun Herald last week had an article about restaurant owners protesting that penalties for minor infringements were listed next to serious ones and minor breaches unfairly still stayed on the NSW list for 12 months.The best answer, not yet acted upon by anyone, is for all inspection reports-good or bad -to be published online, with scope for the owner to add information about rectification of identified problems. This type of system would be an incentive for everyone to keep lifting their game to improve standards, surely the underlying policy objective not necessarily achieved by "name and shame."


  1. Peter Timmins11:31 am

    The South Australian Ombudsman has now ruled that the public interest in disclosure of penalty notices issued by one council outweighs any harm to the business concerned. This should get things moving in the right direction that state. See

  2. Briliant - can't wait for the tidal wave to hit Victoria!