Manchester Port Health Authority is responsible for enforcing the law with regards to food hygiene on vessels arriving into the Port. The Authority is also responsible for any shore side food premises that are located within the Port.
The Food Safety (Ships and Aircraft) (England and Scotland) Order 2002 implements the Food Safety Act 1990. This means that the same food hygiene regulations apply to ships and shore side food premises.
Port Health Officers inspect vessels for compliance with food hygiene legislation. Inspection frequency is determined using a risk based approach and takes into account factors such as;
- Previous History (if known)
- Port of registration
- Age/condition/history of vessel
- Crew and passenger numbers/profile/turnover
- Vessels trading pattern/schedule and previous ports of call
- Confidence in food and water safety management systems
- Date and port of last food safety inspection
- Available documentation
- Recent significant reports of food related problems on the vessel
- Reports from previous inspections
- Valid Ship Sanitation Exemption Control or Control Certificate
When completing a food inspection on board a vessel, officers will consider a number of factors. These include: the facilities; including equipment for food preparation/production/storage; the storage and quality of water used for cooking and drinking; food temperature requirements; waste disposal; pest control procedures and the food handler’s knowledge of food hygiene.
The findings of the inspection will be discussed with the master or his representative and a timescale will be given for any corrective actions required. A written inspection report will also be issued, detailing all of the required actions. Officers are happy to provide advice and support in order to help remedy any identified issues.
Liaison with other Port Health Authorities is maintained through the Association of Port Health Authorities (APHA) with the aim of ensuring consistency of enforcement and sharing good practice. Ship inspection data will be shared, confidentially between port authorities usually by means of email/telephone.
All shore side food businesses operating within the Port are required by law to register their premises with the Authority before trading commences.