Excessive levels of coliform organisms and bacteria found in ice cream samples

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 13 June, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 13 June, 2009, 12:00am

Ice cream samples containing coliform organisms more than six times the legal limit and a bacteria count some 12 times the allowed level have been found in recent Centre for Food Safety tests.

A green tea ice-cream sample from an Appolo Magic House store in Tai Po Plaza contained 720 coliform organisms per gram and had a total bacteria count of 630,000 per gram. A mango ice-cream sample from the same store had 85,000 bacteria per gram.

This was far above the legal limit of no more than 50,000 bacteria or 100 coliform organisms per gram for ice cream or a frozen confection.

A bean curd ice-cream sample from A-1 Bakery in Taipo Centre also failed, with 750 coliform organisms per gram and 250,000 bacteria per gram. Two samples from the store's outlets in Hoi Lai Estate, Sham Shui Po, and in Yat Tung Estate in Tung Chung had excessive bacteria levels

A sundae sample from a McDonald's in Tin Chak Shopping Centre, Tin Shui Wai, contained 160 coliform organisms per gram. McDonald's last night expressed concern about the 'isolated case at an individual restaurant and have addressed it'. Later tests on samples from the same outlet passed.

A soft ice cream from a Circle K store in Wan Chai had 170 coliform organisms per gram. A Circle K spokesman said the result of independent tests on a sample from the same store on the same day the centre took one met safety standards.

Of the 550 samples tested, nine failed, said the centre, which has issued warning letters.