Record of Decision - DEIM Task 1.10.01.09 - Water/Steam/Quality & Supply - Microbiological Testing

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Question or Description of Problem:

1. The January 2010 version of the Dairy Establishment Inspection Manual (DEIM) based the requirements for water quality and testing on Health Canada's Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality that were in place at that time, as well as provincial regulations. As of December 2010, the guidelines have been updated. As a result of the updates, DEIM inspection criteria, with respect to microbiological testing no longer reflect these guidelines.

Background:

DEIM task 1.10.01.09 currently states that an establishment's water source must meet the requirements of Health Canada's Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality. In addition, the task also requires that establishments test source water annually and in plant water once per month for the absence of coliform and either thermotolerant coliform or E. coli, using acceptable test methodology.

In the updated Health Canada's Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality (December 2010) it is recommended to test for E. coli rather than thermotolerant coliform, reason being E. coli is considered a definitive indicator of faecal pollution (and thus the presence of pathogens) whereas thermotolerant coliform are not necessarily faecal specific.

Decision:

Until the DEIM can be updated to reflect this change, the following microbiological testing will be required:

  1. Source Water – tested annually for total coliform and E. coli.
  2. In Plant Water – tested once per month for total coliform and E. coli.
  3. The maximum acceptable concentration for both total coliform and E. coli is non-detectable per 100 mL.
  4. All other requirements currently in task 1.10.01.09 continue to apply.

The DEIM will be updated to reflect this position on the next revision.

See Health Canada's Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality for more information

Jennifer Miner
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Recommended by: Program Chief
25/10/2011
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Date
Wassim El-Khoury
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Approved by: National Manager
26/10/2011
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Date
Date modified: