Three noon meal centres in Erode to get ISO certification

The noon meal centre storeroom at the Corporation Girls Higher Secondary School at Karungalpalayam in Erode on Saturday.   | Photo Credit: M. GOVARTHAN

Noon meal centres functioning under the Puratchi Thalaivar MGR Nutritious Meals Scheme at three government schools in the district are in the process of obtaining ISO 9001:2015 certification for following hygienic practices in cooking and storing ingredients.

The State government had in 2019 decided to obtain the certification for 100 centres that function under Social Welfare and Nutritious Meal Programme Department in the State to increase the operational efficiency and quality management of the centres. These centres provide 13 varieties of meals and egg masala to children in primary and upper primary classes.

An auditing company was appointed to examine the centres based on several parameters and to give recommendations for quality improvement.

A senior official of the noon meal programme said that the centres functioning at the Corporation Girls Higher Secondary School at Karungalpalayam in Erode and at the government schools at Thottampalayam in Bhavani Sagar and at Kalingiyam in Gobichettipalayam were selected and evaluated by the company. Parameters include purchase of quality vegetables and ingredients, weighing the items, storage, hygienic cooking practices, cleanliness at the centre, kitchen gardening and a few other aspects.

T.D. Mala, headmistress, GGHSS, Karungalpalayam told The Hindu that second round auditing has been completed and the discrepancies pointed out were rectified. Installation of surveillance cameras, fire extinguisher, use of food thermometers, use of purified water for cooking, availability of weighing machines, use of water geysers for cleaning plates were the main parameters stressed for certification and we have fulfilled it, she said.

Ms. Mala said that students pointed out the mistakes in the suggestion book, which helped the centre maintain quality. M. Maheswari, coordinator of the centre, and R. Savitha, cook, said that fresh vegetables and quality ingredients were being used for cooking.

“There is no compromise on quality and hygiene at any cost here”, both said. They cook noon meal for 161 students. We do not use plastic materials for storage purpose, they said.

Officials said that the three centres might receive the certification in the coming weeks.

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Printable version | Mar 8, 2021 12:33:43 PM |

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