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Intertek Hong Kong Partners with PolyUto Promote Food Hygiene Standard Certification System (FHSCS) for Local Catering Industry
Intertek Hong Kong has entered into a partnership with the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) to promote food hygiene and safety in Hong Kong by offering the Food Hygiene Standard Certification System (FHSCS), a service tailor-made for the local catering industry.
Developed by PolyU’s Food Safety and Technology Research Centre (FSTRC), FHSCS is reputed to be the first of its kind in providing a standard stipulating the requirements for practicable food hygiene systems in catering establishments. The standard is based on the principles of Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP), and is designed to reduce health risks from food safety hazards arising from biological, chemical or physical agents, in particular microbiological agents and extraneous physical objects. It considers all factors relating to the hygiene of food and edible products, during processing, production, preparation, storing, serving and eventual consumption.
To promote this unique Certification System FHSCS, Intertek and PolyU co-hosted a seminar on 30 April. It welcomed representatives from local restaurants, canteens, fast-food chains and caterers who are aware of the increasing public expectations regarding food safety and hygiene.
Dr Wong Ka-hing, Associate Director, Food Safety and Technology Research Centre, PolyU comments: "Local versions of dishes from both East and West cooked in different ways have made Hong Kong a popular gourmet city. However, direct application of HACCP principles that control processes for every product is not very practicable for Hong Kong-style catering establishments. FHSCS is tailor-made to cope with the typical characteristics of the local catering industry, and FHSCS certification helps to protect public health, as well as identify the hazards and critical control points in food processing."
Under FHSCS, food products are divided into categories based on their basic processing steps, food characteristics, serving conditions, hygiene considerations, etc. HACCP principles are then applied to each broad category. The standard can also be applied to any kind of dine-in catering establishment, including restaurants, canteens, or Chinese-style caterers which serve large varieties of dishes every day.
Dr Leung Ka-sing, Associate Director, Food Safety and Technology Research Centre, PolyU adds: "We are delighted to partner with Intertek and we appreciate that Intertek's continuous efforts to ensure public health are being safeguarded through many of its testing and assurance solutions. Since the launch of the system last year, we have received considerable positive attention from the catering industry, including restaurants from Macao. We believe that in the near future, the standard will be widely adopted across the region and eventually become a local certification model."
Denis Leung, General Manager, Food, Intertek Hong Kong, explains: “Hong Kong surely boasts one of the highest per-capita concentrations of cafes and restaurants in the world. The city brings together international cuisines served at many different types of catering establishments. The government has been relentlessly working to increase controls and inspections on food safety, ingredients quality, origin and traceability. As a Total Quality Assurance solutions provider, Intertek is ideally positioned to partner with PolyU to promote food safety and hygiene through the implementation of this system, and to then protect the business reputation of our customers, and of course at the same time, the well-being of the end-consumer."
The system also enables caterers, especially small and medium-sized enterprises, to acquire certification with minimum resources, which makes it a perfect first step for local caterers who would like to improve their hygiene standard while demonstrating their achievement to the public.
established internationally accredited methods, Intertek constantly reviews and
updates testing methodologies to keep pace with changing food-borne threats.
The company also assists its clients to fully comply with all relevant
food-safety regulations. The full range of food-testing services also covers
food contamination, shelf-life testing, GMO and food authenticity, nutritional
labelling and allergens.