The Best Bites program recognises Mornington Peninsula food and related businesses for their efforts to provide safe and healthy food, use environmentally sustainable business practices, and provide safe and accessible premises.
The program, introduced by Mornington Peninsula Shire in 2012, was developed by a steering committee of food businesses, consumers and traders groups, including representatives from Peninsula Health, South East Water, Heart Foundation, mp Gourmet and Responsible Alcohol Victoria.
Participating businesses are assessed in five areas:
- Healthy Eating – Each business must provide healthy eating options in line with Australian Dietary Guidelines and the Heart Foundation Healthier Catering Guidelines.
- Tobacco and Alcohol – Tobacco Act compliance will be assessed using checklists provided by Department of Health, including signage, smoke free dining and retail displays. All service areas, including outdoor dining areas, must be kept smoke free. Licensed premises must comply with their license requirements including Responsible Service of Alcohol training for all staff.
- Recycling and Waste – Each business must have programs in place to reduce the amount of waste generated. This could include recycling, composting of food scraps, the use of recycled packaging and an environmental purchasing policy.
- Energy and Water – Each business must prevent wastewater from entering local drains and waterways and should have programs to reduce their water and energy use. This includes water saving plumbing fixtures and energy efficient lighting and appliances.
- Access for All – Business should provide access and resources for all customers, including those with a physical, intellectual or other disability
Businesses that meet the requirements are featured in the printed and online Best Bites Food Guide, and receive window stickers to identify their participation.
Businesses can nominate for annual awards in the following categories: Aged Care, Bed and Breakfast/Home Based Retailer, Café, Restaurant, School Canteen/Child Care, Supermarket, Take Away, and Innovation.
This project has potential for application across the Western Port Biosphere with the support of local councils.
2017 Best Bites