School feeding scheme food found 'safe to be consumed' following investigation

Image: NIGEL LOUW

Food supplied by the national school nutrition programme in Mpumalanga has been found to be safe for consumption.

The nutrition programme was suspended  after two pupils from Nelson Ngubeni Primary School died of suspected food poisoning last month.

Mpumalanga education MEC Bonakele Majuba said based on the samples taken from the food that was supplied by the school, there was no micro-organisms (germs) that could be linked to the food-borne illness.

“This means that the food from the school was safe to be consumed by the beneficiaries. Even though the Nelson Ngubeni Primary School national school nutrition programme is safe, it has been recommended that the school should strengthen its housekeeping processes in the kitchen.

All the old cooking equipment will be replaced and the school will improve the ambience of the kitchen and intensify hygiene measures in the kitchen including learners and food handlers,” Majuba said.

Majuba said the SAPS investigation on the snacks bought by pupils at different tuck shops is ongoing.

Majuba said the school will remain on high alert for any pupil presenting with similar signs and symptoms and report to the local healthcare facilities.

“The environmental health practitioners will continue to support and monitor the school on safe food measures on a regular basis,” Majuba said.

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