Costco corrects DOH food temperature violation

  • The Hawaii Department of Health issued a conditional pass to Costco on March 1 for food temperature violations. A re-inspection on Monday showed staff had rectified the situation. The store once again has a green card. (Tiffany DeMasters/West Hawaii Today)

KAILUA-KONA — An inspection at Costco revealed foodborne illness risk factors resulting in a conditional pass from the Hawaii Department of Health.

On Monday morning, the yellow placard posted outside the store indicated an inspection done on Friday discovered a violation in food temperatures. A re-inspection completed Monday showed adequate procedures had been put in place to rectify the issue.


A green placard — issued to establishments with no more than one violation — has since been posted, according to a DOH report filed Monday.

The health department’s inspection was a result of a general complaint.

During the visit on Friday, state health inspectors discovered during early morning stocking that food being stocked in deli L refrigerators had the potential to be left out of the appropriate temperature for up to six hours.

“Potential for multiple temp abuse of product over the course of the product’s presence in store,” the March 1 report stated. “There is no time/temperature monitoring of product left out for stocking. Product stocked by vendors is not monitored.”

Foods required for cold storage must maintain a temperature of 41 degrees or less.

Seven different foods stored in the deli L aisle were impacted: clam chowder, organic vegetable barley soup, protein noodles, tomato basil soup, chicken alfredo tagliatele, Sabra Hummus and protein bars. Their temperatures varied from 46.6 degrees to 43 degrees. Manapua was also affected.

Changes to correct the issue were made over the weekend, according to a DOH followup report Monday.

Forklift drivers have been staging refrigerated foods in the dairy cooler where the pallets are broken down and setup for stocking. The drivers only place pallets on the sales floor when personnel are available to stock and only when there are large amounts to be stocked, according to the report.

“A systematic approach has been adopted to ensure that products are stocked within an appropriate time,” the report states.

Temperature logs also tracked time and temperature of foods stored on the floor for stocking.


“Violations have been corrected,” the report states. “No other issues noted during the inspection. Green placard posted.”

Attempts to reach Costco were unsuccessful as of press time Monday.

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