Epworth kitchen hits top global standard

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Hospital food might not have the greatest reputation, but Epworth HealthCare has received international recognition for its efforts to provide patients with the best – and safest – cuisine.

The Victoria-based group’s Richmond hospital, which serves more than a million meals annually, has been awarded a prestigious International Organization for Standardization (ISO) rating for its food safety management system.

Epworth is the first healthcare organisation in Australia to achieve the ISO 22000:2018 standard for its hospital kitchen. 

Allison Evans, the Melbourne hospital’s executive general manager, said the rating showed Epworth’s commitment to be an industry leader in food safety – and the benefits could be passed on to the group’s other facilities.

“Epworth is renowned for our patient care and renowned for our restaurant-quality food, which can be ordered on-demand from the Point of Care screens in each patient’s room.

“Achieving ISO 22000 accreditation was a two-year process requiring a ‘whole of organisation’ approach to food safety to set up a detailed risk management process. That process can then be used to implement new food services across other Epworth hospitals,” she said.

Epworth Richmond, celebrating its centenary this year, went through a two-day audit to receive ISO 22000 certification.

Group Director Hospitality Services Nazim Bayrak said Epworth met the stringent ISO criteria in seven ‘Areas of Excellence’ and also provided evidence of excellent practice.

“The audit recognised excellence in the cleanliness of the kitchen, quality of the preparation and cooking utensils, our storage area, labelling, food safety documentation and our maintenance,” he said.

“All of that means our patients and their families can have confidence in the quality of the 1.2 million meals we serve at Epworth Richmond each year.”

Epworth Richmond food facts

Each year, the hospital’s kitchen uses:

  • 90,000 loaves of bread
  • 78,000 litres of milk
  • 33,000 kg of beef
  • 33,000 kg of apples
  • 18,000 kg of potatoes

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