Dairysafe conducted five workshops in June and the feedback from participants was overwhelmingly positive. Now the content has been developed into a four-part listeria webinar series.

Listeria monocytogenes is considered the number one food safety hazard in dairy processing. In 2013 in Australia, there was a large outbreak of listeriosis from mould-ripened cheeses which was linked to 34 illnesses and seven deaths, including 1 miscarriage.

“Previous food safety audits highlighted inconsistency with risk analysis, a lack of appreciation of the risk of listeria and managing the listeria hazard,” said Geoff Raven, Dairysafe CEO.

“Dairy processors aren’t necessarily well served with information to assist in understanding the mitigation strategies for managing the risk of listeria in dairy manufacture. The Dairysafe Board recognised this as a gap and endorsed the delivery of these workshops.”

The listeria workshops were delivered by Dr John Sumner and addressed:

  • Listeria’s relevance to dairy and dairy processing;
  • Managing listeria in processing facilities – sources of contamination, prevention, physical controls, relevance of HACCP and your food safety program; and
  • Monitoring for listeria, and actions on detecting it in the environment.

There were 62 attendees representing 23 accredited dairy processors. The direct feedback from attendees indicated the workshops were well received, met a need, were appreciated and informative.

Overwhelmingly, attendees considered the workshops to convey an informative, engaging and worthwhile process.

Some of the specific comments included: “Provided information we can directly use in our business.”; “I’m new to dairy – was good learning about listeria and was presented really well.”; “Learnt more about listeria and will take a lot of information back to the business for other staff.”; “The presenter asked specific questions of what we do at the factory and gave advice, which is very helpful, the presentation was comprehensive.”; and “Presenter adapted to our business and was able to provide real world examples to our staff as to how listeria was able to impact the plant.”

A listeria training opportunity for your staff

The four part listeria webinar series is ideally suited to induction, targeted training and refresher training. The webinars are available on the Dairysafe website here.

Also available with the webinars is an online evaluation form, to assess staff knowledge and, upon successful completion, a digital certificate of completion will be automatically generated to acknowledge staff attendance.