In Luxembourg: Food hygiene: a third of the operators checked must go to the checkout

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LUXEMBOURG – Of the 1,000 to 1,200 inspections carried out each year by the health authorities, a third lead to re-checks, which cost up to 500 euros.

Food hygiene is not always respected by food producers and distributors.

Mathieu Vacon/The essential

Food hygiene is not always respected by food producers and distributors (retail trade, catering and drinking establishments, wholesale trade, manufacture of bakery products, etc.). “In Luxembourg, of the 1,000 to 1,200 inspections carried out each year by the health authorities (Editor’s note: the Administration of Technical Services of Agriculture (Asta), the Administration of Veterinary Services (ASV) and the Division of food safety of the Health Department (SécuAlim)), a third give rise to requests for corrective measures”, explains Patrick Hau.

The government commissioner for quality, fraud and food safety, details the procedure: “The agents note one or more non-conformities, they will ask that the establishment comply with the standards. There will then be a re-control, with different activities that are taxed (inspection, report, samples and analyses). The bill can go up to 300 or even 500 euros”. In the event of very serious non-compliance, Patrick Hau explains that legal proceedings can be launched. “This represents about 20 files per year, since 2009, he said. It is rather rare, we try to avoid it, because the delays are much longer”.

It must be said that the field of food safety is evolving, at the regulatory (example: taking into account the danger of acrylamide) and technological (examples: methods of cooking, preservation) levels. As such, the ASBL Horesca presented on Tuesday an update of its guide to good hygiene practices. “We had to give answers to companies, the phone kept ringing,” says François Koepp. The Secretary General of Horesca explains that most of the questions asked by hotels, restaurants and cafés concern the future of packaging, deliveries, or even the right temperatures for storing food.

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