VIOLATION FREE: Rykers’ Ridge Elementary School third-grader Danny Winters has his lunch served to him by Cathy Koontz, right, and Wanda Young at the school cafeteria. Rykers’ Ridge was one of nine businesses and institutions that serve food in Jefferson County to make it through 2012 without any violations from the Jefferson County Health Department. (Staff photo by Ken Ritchie)
VIOLATION FREE: Rykers’ Ridge Elementary School third-grader Danny Winters has his lunch served to him by Cathy Koontz, right, and Wanda Young at the school cafeteria. Rykers’ Ridge was one of nine businesses and institutions that serve food in Jefferson County to make it through 2012 without any violations from the Jefferson County Health Department. (Staff photo by Ken Ritchie)
Nine Jefferson County businesses and locations that handle food made it through 2012 without a single violation from the Jefferson County Health Department.

The list includes: 1st Street Country Saloon, Breaktime Cardinal Catering, Holiday Inn Express, Nancy's Tasteful Cakes, Traderbakers Flea Market, Deputy Elementary School, Rykers' Ridge Elementary School, Madison Nut and Candy Co. and Hanover Senior Center.

Each location will receive a certificate for the violation-free year.

"It's not an easy feat to have no violations all year," said Health Administrator Tammy Monroe. "It's takes a lot of work from the entire staff."

The health department oversees about 160 restaurants or retail food establishments in Jefferson County and also conducts daily inspections for temporary events where food is served. Inspections are conducted quarterly and document critical, noncritical and repeat violations.

A critical violation is defined as noncompliance that could significantly contribute to food contamination, illness or environment health hazards.

This is the first time Monroe can remember having so many restaurants earning a perfect score.

Monroe likened the schools to a "full-service restaurant," and said that everyone from the janitorial staff to the cooks pitched in to receive the high marks.

"Every one of these establishments, specifically the schools, they have very good employees," she said.

Madison Consolidated Schools has about 30 cafeteria members. The schools all have a ServSav certification, which is earned through the health department, according to MCS food service director Judy Brooks.

Brooks said each cafeteria includes visual reminders for workers to wash their hands and check food temperatures. Both are issues that frequently come up in the health department inspection records.

"The managers and the cooks just know what to watch for," she said. "It's just communication for all of us."