Glossary


The unintended contact with blood and/or body fluids.
Introduction of something to a food product to make it impure or inferior which may cause a health hazard.
A device that is used to sterilize instruments and supplies.
A single cell micro-organism that may cause disease in plants, animals or humans.
Food handler that has successfully completed Waterloo Region Public Health Food Safety Training delivered by Conestoga College or an equivalent recognized course.
The physical removal of organic matter or debris from objects, usually done using water, soap and friction. This process removes micro-organisms primarily by mechanical action, but does not destroy those remaining on the object.
A Public Health Inspector will issue an order under the Health Protection and Promotion Act when there are reasonable and probable grounds that a health hazard exists. The closure order will refer to requirements that need to be met before the closure order can be rescinded and/or the premise can re-open. A person served with an order has 15 days to appeal the order to the Health Services Appeal and Review Board.
All cold food must be stored or held at 4°C or below to prevent the growth of harmful micro-organisms.
The time a disinfectant remains wet on a surface.
For food businesses contamination is the exposure of food to conditions that introduce foreign matter, disease causing microorganisms, and/or toxins.

Potentially hazardous foods must be cooked up to the following temperatures for 15 seconds to kill any harmful bacteria

FoodCook To Internal Temperature
Pork71°C (160°F)
Poultry (chicken, duck, turkey)
- Pieces including ground poultry
- Whole

74°C (165°F)
82°C (180°F)
Ground Meat other than poultry71°C (160°F)
Other food mixtures and dishes74°C (165°F)

Observed item does not meet minimum requirement indicated in the Ontario Regulations for Food Premises, Public Pools, Public Spas and guidelines for Infection Prevention and Control for Personal Service Settings, but has been brought up to the minimum requirement during the inspection in the presence of the public health inspector.
Issues found during an inspection that could pose a potential health hazard when not corrected.
Date that premise is permitted to re-open because inspection requirements have been met
A sink used to rinse utensils under a constant stream of water to prevent growth of microorganisms. For example ice cream scoops.
A substance used on inanimate objects that destroys bacteria, fungi, viruses and some bacterial spores depending on the level of the disinfectant and the contact time used. Disinfectants are classified as high, intermediate or low strengths.
A device that is used to sterilize instruments and supplies.
Issuing a closure order, summons, or ticket.
Any surface, equipment or utensil that comes in contact with food during preparation or serving.

Washing hands using warm water and soap, lathering with soap for 15 seconds, rinsing, and drying hands with paper towels in a designated hand wash sink.
To lean more about how to properly wash your hands click here

Any food that is able to allow the growth of harmful microorganisms, generally food that is high in protein and moisture content. Examples include: meat, fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy products.
A condition of a premises, a substance, thing, plant or animal other than man, or a solid, liquid, gas or combination of any of them, that has or that is likely to have an adverse effect on the health of any person.
Legislation that oversees health units and their delivery of public health programs and services to prevent the spread of disease.
Spores that cannot be killed with heat.
Food businesses that prepare and serve hazardous foods (food that is high in protein and moisture content) that can support the growth of illness causing microorganisms (e.g. meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy products) are considered to be high risk. Hazardous foods are prepared by thawing, cooking, hot-holding, slicing, mixing, or re-heating. High risk premises include full menu restaurants, cafeterias, nursing homes and large grocery stores that also prepare hot food for the public. High risk food businesses are inspected three times per year.
Potentially hazardous hot food must be stored or held at 60°C or above to prevent the growth of harmful microorganisms.
A surface that is non-absorbent, such as glass or metal.
Observed item meets the minimum public health requirement outlined in the Ontario Regulations for Food Premises, Public Pools, Public Spas and guidelines for Infection Prevention and Control for Personal Service Settings.
A guideline published by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care that comprises general recommendations for all personal service settings (businesses that offer beauty & body art services) and equipment.

Equipment/devices used in beauty & body art are classified into critical, semi-critical and non-critical depending on their use.

  • Critical equipment/device: Tools that penetrate the skin and present a high risk of infection if contaminated. These require cleaning, then sterilization. Example: needles.
  • Semi-critical: Tools that contact non-intact skin and could penetrate skin, presenting a moderate risk of infection if contaminated. These require cleaning then intermediate or high-level disinfection. Example: tweezers.
  • Non-critical: Tools that may touch intact skin and present a low risk of infection if contaminated. These require cleaning and low-level disinfection. Example: combs.

Cold holding, hot holding, and cooking temperatures are measured by their internal food temperature by using a probe thermometer to obtain the most accurate storage or cooking temperature.
Any procedure intended to break the skin (e.g. tattooing, micro pigmentation, piercing, electrolysis, acupuncture).
Food businesses that serve pre-packaged foods, or prepare and serve non-hazardous foods are considered to be low risk. Low risk food businesses include convenience stores, hot dog carts and refreshment stands. Low risk food businesses are inspected once per year.
Food businesses that prepare hazardous foods but require less food handling and preparation, and premises that prepare non-hazardous foods (i.e. baked goods) are considered to be medium risk. Medium risk food businesses include fast food restaurants, pizzerias, bake shops and small grocery stores. Medium risk food businesses are inspected two times per year.
Bacteria, virus, or parasite that cannot be seen without a microscope. Some are harmful and can cause disease, infection or illness.
Issues found during an inspection that do not pose an immediate health hazard and usually do not require a re-inspection. It should be corrected in a timely manner before the next scheduled inspection.
Any procedure that is not intended to break the skin (e.g. nail filing, waxing).
Observed item does not meet minimum requirement outlined in the Ontario Regulations for Food Premises, Public Pools, Public Spas and guidelines for Infection Prevention and Control for Personal Service Settings.
Legislation that sets out the minimum requirements that all food establishments must follow. Public Health Inspectors base their food safety inspections on this regulation.

The requirements for employment as a public health inspector are that the person,

  1. be the holder of a certificate granted by the Board of Certification of Public Health Inspectors of The Canadian Institute of Public Health Inspectors;
  2. is registered as a veterinarian under the Veterinarians Act and is the holder of a certificate in veterinary public health or has experience that the Minister considers equivalent to such registration and certification; or
  3. be the holder of a certificate issued prior to the 1st day of July, 1979 by The Canadian Public Health Association or by a certifying organization that is recognized by The Canadian Public Health Association. R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 566, s. 5.

Pools and hot tubs that are operated on the premises where the general public are admitted; or institutions, education, instructional, physical fitness or athletic institutions supported in whole or in part by public funds; or recreational camps, mobile home parks, nurses residences, hotels, campgrounds, private clubs, condominiums and apartment buildings, day nursery’s, day camps, or establishments/institutions for the care or treatment of persons who are ill, infirm, or aged; or for persons in custodial care.
Food that is reheated must be reheated to the original cooking temperature within two hours before serving.
A container that receives or holds something (e.g. laundry bin).
Follow-up visits are conducted to verify if an infraction has been corrected. Re-inspections may be required if the violation is considered a critical infraction, or as deemed necessary by a Public Health Inspector.
Equipment/devices used during the process of carrying out beauty and body art services that can be cleaned and disinfected after each use (e.g. tweezers).
An inspection where a public health inspector visits a business (or facility), usually unannounced. Inspections are based on the requirements outlined in the the Ontario Regulations for Food Premises, Public Pools, Public Spas and guidelines for Infection Prevention and Control for Personal Service Settings.
Sanitary sewers transport wastewater released from a sink, drain, toilet etc. to treatment plants where it is cleaned before being released into the environment.
Reducing the number of harmful microorganisms to a safe level with the use of an approved sanitizing solution
Any items that may penetrate the skin such as blades, lancets, razors and needles.
Also known as a challenge test that is performed on autoclaves/dry heat sterilizers bi-weekly to ensure that the equipment is working properly.
A form assumed by some bacteria that is resistant to heat, drying and chemicals. Under the right environmental conditions, the spore may return to the actively multiplying form of the disease.
Sterilization results in the destruction of all forms of microbial life including bacteria, viruses, spores and fungi and thus makes the object sterile. Equipment/devices must be cleaned thoroughly before effective sterilization can take place.
A summons requires the business owner or operator to appear in court rather than just pay a set fine. A trial will proceed and a Justice of the Peace will determine guilt of the owner or operator and set a fine.
Tickets are usually issued if repeat infractions (violations) of the Ontario Food Premises Regulations are observed. Tickets are not issued for beauty & body art businesses. As of November 27, 2001, set fines were approved for each of the offences listed in Schedule 40 of Ontario Regulation 950 under the Provincial Offences Act. The new set fines are $50.00, $100.00, $250.00 and $375.00 plus a victim surcharge.
A machine that cleans instruments by ultrasound waves. Also known as an ultrasonic washer.