The reports are part of a rolling programme by the Agency which scrutinises the food law enforcement activities of all Scotland's 32 local authorities with the aim of raising national standards and improving consumer protection. Moray and South Ayrshire Councils are the sixth and seventh authorities to be audited.
Today's reports reveal that both Moray and South Ayrshire show a commitment to continuous improvement. In both areas, council staff were found to be "knowledgeable, competent and motivated". In addition:
Some areas for improvement were identified, such as:
A follow-up Action Plan covering key areas for improvement has been agreed with the Councils.
Jim Thomson, Assistant Director of the Food Standards Agency Scotland said:
"Moray and South Ayrshire Council have done well in their Local Authority food law enforcement audit and consumers in these areas can be reassured that they are receiving adequate protection. Although there are areas for improvement today's reports will allow them to focus on these weaknesses and further raise their standards."
Councillor Eddie Coutts, Vice Chairman of the Environmental Services Committee from Moray Council, said:
"I am pleased with the positive outcome of the Food Standards Agency audit. Food Safety is an important issue especially with the current high levels of food poisoning. The Moray Council is committed to maintaining and improving the Food Safety Service to ensure the public is adequately protected. Improvements in food safety are not only an enforcement issue but require support from the business community and we will continue to work in conjunction with the business community to achieve this goal. The audit highlighted areas for improvement and the Moray Council will ensure these are addressed."
Colin Wallace, Environmental Health Manager for South Ayrshire Council, said:
"The audit report reinforces the importance the Council places on food safety and demonstrates the commitment of staff to the delivery of a comprehensive, consistent, high quality service."