Dear Tusher,

I agree that testing of food before giving to large number of guests is a common practice followed by all of us even during wedding. Here the testing does not mean Taste. In most of the establishments having canteen facility, there are different methods adopted for ensuring proper quality of food as under:

1. To appoint a Small Committee of 3/4 employees with Manager HR as Chairman and others to fix daily menu for the week, hygiene of canteen workers, cleanliness of premises, upkeep of furniture, crockery and utensils cleaning quality, etc.

2. To appoint Canteen Manager who can do the food testing and look after other functions. This person should be of cantteen contractor.

3. If Management is staff health concious, like RBI who have Dietician who decides menu for a week and also does periodic food testing

What is important is HR Manager should take this reposibility with grace. Also suggest the ways stated above to the Management. It is always desirable to state the problem and plausible solutions to the Management lest we become unwittingly part of the problem.

Anil Mulye

From India, Mumbai
It is all a question of 'attitude' and the way you look at things. I think, you have not liked the way your boss has ordered you to taste the food before it is seved to others. The boss should have only asked you to taste the food yourself, so that you could decide if it was meeting with the required standard. Then, it was left to you whether you taste it 'before' or 'along' with others.
Since you cant educate your boss, it is best to accept it in the right spirit. Once in a way,taste the food before it is seved to others, some times have a committee to do this, and sometimes, have your meal along with others and get feed back from them. Finally, adopt a policy that every one, from top boss to lowest level, has the same food. This way, you will make every one taste the same food,and based on a general feed back decide the future course of action.
Remember, it is always wise to think first and react in a positive manner.

From India, Nagpur
I have gone through your statment regarding Food testing in canteen. Generally these things is managed by Admin people but again i believe that it is not a big issue for HR professionals what you have to do you have to plan for weekly menu with the help of your employees and send this menu to food vendor and check employee feedback after their lunch or dinner.

From India
Dear All ,
Thanks for your valuable guidence .
I feel forming a comitee would have been the best possible situation .
Anyhow the HR team had a meeting recentely and we have decided that we will approach our Sr.Management with 2 proposals .
First we form a comitee consisting of 1 member from each Department and second idea is since ours is a Pharma R&D company , from HR we will collect the food samples from canteen at regular intervals and hand over the same to our analytical department we can analyse the food samples to check any contamination .
thanks to all for necessary guidence .

From India, Mumbai
Dear Tushar
As per our Indian Law you need to follow IS : 22000 concepts, its a Food Regulatory Law, lot of checks has to be done right from raw material to till we eat the food. A separate SOP has to be prepared.

From India, Visakhapatnam
Hi, I agree with Ravi.... If HR is employees friend, there is no problem in testing the food... So... test the food, eat the food.... and Enjoy... Join hands with a committee of members....
From India, Madras
In our company we have tasting committee. They taste the food and give feedback immediately in a specified format and based on the feed back the canteen people will make proper changes. This will also fulfill the statutory requirement.
Our way of convincing people will also get success in this case.

From Germany, Herzogenaurach
Don't mind but this is not the correct attitude towards HR either by management or by seniors. Go ahead straight forward and say that you will not do it. Because its a clear cut humiliation to HR Professionals. Its your duty to check the hygienic condition, but not at the cost of Humiliation.
With Best Regards,
Om Prakash

From India, Vadodara
Dear Frineds,
We conduct micro biological test periodically for canteen food items and air through expert laboratories. These results helps us to know the hygiene level and to initiate necessary actions for further improvment. You can conduct health and hygiene audits also through these external consultants to initiate necessary actions.

From Germany
Dear Tushar,

The solution which the management has found out is not the solution but there are ways to tell back the management:

If you are angry and show ur frustration may be all your efforts till date will go in vain. so calm down and may be you could try these possible solutions based on the condition and work environment.

1. Suggest that we should form a canteen community which should involve people from the higher management, yourself, and members from accross all levels of the organization

A. Who would be tasting food. Note testing and Tasting food are two different words

B. Who would conduct surprise audits of the kitchen in terms of cleanliness, hygienic methods of cooking, use of less oil and spices, No use of cooking soda( which is very common amongst canteen vendors as it leads to people who eat seem full even with a small portion of food) and use of fresh food and lots of salad and fruits.

C. Appoint a nutritionist to conduct surprise visits to the factory(belive me it will cost much lesser than what you will spend if u are caught by a food or factory inspector or health department ) and send you monthly reviews this will lead the third party vendors or people in litchen to be highly alert and lesser scope of manipulation.

D. Display the audit results and always make a point to mail it out to your management and employees (sometimes publicity does wonder !!!) and also to the person incharge of your Food and beverages. Appreciate where needed and be stern too.

E. An extra initiative by each of the committee members can also do wonders like health talk or suggesting nutritive food in the same cost. Ask for further suggestions from members to improvise and lead the cause of can do many wonders to your career as well.

You would still be leading the cause yet still not at stake alone. If you would like to discuss some more ideas feel free to mail me at

Do let me know if you found the topic usefull



From Singapore, Singapore

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