Food Safety

Food safety is one of the most important steps in keeping the children under your care safe from illness or infection.
Food safety begins with the people handling the food. We strongly recommend that all childcare staff acquire their food handler certification for the safety of children in your facility's care.

Public Health inspections

Oxford County Public Health inspects all child care centre for compliance with the Food Premises Regulation 562 three times per year for nurseries and two times per year for preschools. Additional inspections may be performed to investigate complaints or suspected food-borne illnesses.

Public Health Inspectors assess:

  • How food is received, stored, prepared and served
  • Personal hygiene of employees
  • Dishwashing and sanitization 
  • Pest control
  • Garbage collection, holding and disposal
  • Cleanliness of floors, equipment, and other surfaces
Kitchen temperatures (including safe cooking temperatures)

Food from an approved source

In accordance with the Food Premises Regulation 562, all food that is served to the children at your child care centre must be from an approved source. An “approved source” food that is from a government inspected premise. For this reason, food products that are prepared at the homes of parents or staff should not be served to the children. An exception is made for parents providing food for their own child due to special dietary restrictions.

If parents/staff wish to provide food for special functions such as birthdays, it should originate from an approved source and should be non-hazardous (e.g., an item that does not require refrigeration or heating) and allergy safe. A hazardous food is one which is capable of supporting the growth of harmful organisms.

If your centre permits parents/staff to bring in outside food, from an approved source, a log book should be maintained. Information to be recorded in the log book should include: type of food brought in, where the food was purchased, who brought the food in, and the date food was brought in.


Quick Reference

Have a question about food safety? Call the Oxford County Public Health Inspector for your facility at 519-539-9800