A waitress serves pizza at a restaurant in Moscow, September 10, 2014.
A waitress serves pizza at a restaurant in Moscow, September 10, 2014. REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev

Food safety star ratings will be displayed at more South Australian cafes, restaurants as well as pubs from 2016 under the voluntary Food Safety Rating Scheme.

The move comes after a successful pilot programme, which hopes to counter health-related issues. Under the scheme, businesses are subjected to regular council inspections and awarded up to five stars if it meets the food safety criteria.

An ABC report said that the trial scheme involved nine of the state’s 68 councils and will be expanded to all councils that want to participate. The ratings will reflect the food safety standards of local businesses. "The pilot has proven very successful and we have decided to expand the scheme to all councils which want to participate and involve their local businesses," SA Health's director of food safety and nutrition, Fay Jenkins, said.

Since the inception of the scheme, “3, 4, and 5-star certificates have been awarded to more than 800 local restaurants, cafes and pubs based on how well they did in their regular council inspection, which is a great result." The better a business does during their inspection, the higher the star rating will be.

According to a News Corp report, the ratings will help customers determine how perfectly a food business can comply with food safety standards, including how food is stored and handled. The diners as well as other food consumers will easily be able to decide or verify whether local businesses have matched the expected safety standards.

"Encouraging businesses to display their star rating aims to improve standards in the food service industry and will also help to improve public health by reducing the risk of food poisoning,” Jenkins said.

Appropriate actions will be taken against those businesses that do not meet the national food safety standards. They will also not be awarded a star rating.

Adelaide was part of the pilot programme, with Adelaide Lord Mayor Martin Haese said he is now looking forward to wider implementation of the scheme because it would benefit both diners and outlets.

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