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Sushi Sushi and/or Sushii Izakaya Stores

September 8, 2016
Food Safety

sushiDear EHOs,

For Action by Council Officers

All councils with Sushi Sushi and/or Izakaya stores are requested to attend stores and ensure the preparation of rice the night before and cooked the following day does not occur. EHOs should take action if it is suspected that food being sold is unsafe.
For example, if rice has been prepared as per the method outlined above and the food containing it is offered for sale, seizure of the product may be appropriate. It is the responsibility of the EHO to make this decision based on the evidence available.

Please also pay attention to the pH level of rice being attained prior to adding additional ingredients during food preparation.

Background:

Risk of Bacillus cereus emetic (vomiting) toxin in sushi rice.

It has come to the attention of the department that Sushi Sushi stores, and Izakaya stores are preparing the first batch of white rice used for the day unsafely.

All stores are preparing the first batch of white rice the night before, but it is not cooked until the following morning. The preparation involves raw rice and water being placed in a rice cooker before the store closes. This may range from around 5pm, to late trading hours such as 9pm. The timer on the rice cooker is reportedly set to begin cooking the rice the following morning from around 5.30am.

It can be reasonably expected that growth of B.cereus in the precooked rice will result in the production of emetic toxin. The toxin will not be destroyed by cooking the rice.

Sushi Sushi Head Office are contacting all stores from today instructing that the practice must stop. This is being done verbally, followed by written communication.

The department has been informed that all stores are using food safety programs developed from the DHHS Food Safety Program template for class 2 retail and food service businesses No.1 version 3, including the Sushi Supplement. This practice is contrary to the food safety program instructions, and the pH level of rice may also not be attained as per the FSP (pH 4.0 should be attained as per the FSP No.1 v3).

Sushi Sushi have a registered FSP template version 1 with the DHHS, but this has not been rolled out to stores.

If you have any queries about this communication, or have further information to assist with this instruction, please contact Karen Marsh on 9096 1457 or email