Prison kitchens get ‘4 star’ in food safety ratings

The kitchens of two prisons in Salem have achieved a rare feat by getting ‘4 star’ ratings under the Eat Right Campus campaign here, perhaps the first prisons in the State to achieve the ratings.

The central prison and the central women’s sub-jail have received the ratings under the Eat Right India campaign. According to prison authorities, the prisons were given the ratings after the Food Safety officials inspected them for hygienic food practices and cleanliness among other factors.

Superintendent of Prisons M. Senthil Kumar said hygienic practices were being followed in the kitchens and raw materials and vegetables used for cooking were stored in clean and safe manner. While there were about 1,045 inmates in the central prison and 58 inmates in the women’s sub-jail.

A prison official in-charge of the kitchen and the bakery at the central prison said fresh vegetables were being procured almost on a daily basis. Cooks in the kitchen were advised on hygiene practices and some minor improvements were made to the kitchen premises as part of the ratings. While two inmates worked in the bakery, four or five persons worked in the kitchen.

R. Kathiravan, Designated Officer for Food Safety, said the ratings were given to the prisons considering the food safety practices followed. “The vegetables were stored in a professional manner and they were well maintained. Some safety advices like segregated gas lines for cooking, pest control measures and measures to improve ventilation and prevent dust accumulation were implemented,” he said. The evaluations were done by a third-party agency.

Mr. Kathiravan said four cooks from the kitchens underwent food safety training and the prisons were practising better food waste management. The certification would be valid for two years and food samples would be sent for tests during the period as part of retaining the ratings, he said.

Breads to Salem GH

The prison bakery has received the contract to supply breads for patients at the Government Mohan Kumaramangalam Medical College Hospital for six months. Prison authorities said, on an average they would be supplying 2,000 kg of white bread to the hospital. During July alone, 2,022 kg of bread was supplied to the hospital.

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Printable version | Sep 23, 2021 2:02:09 PM |

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