Mandurah: no need for chip on the shoulder over MARC’s cafe treat

The hot chips are safe at Mandurah Aquatic and Recreation Centre.
The hot chips are safe at Mandurah Aquatic and Recreation Centre.

MANDURAH Aquatic and Recreation Centre’s popular hot chips are safe.

Patrons have been up in arms over the possibility that the centre cafe’s hot chips would be banned as the result of a council assessment of health food options currently underway.

But councillors were assured at their committee meeting yesterday it would not happen.

Cr Fred Reibeling, who raised the hot chips issue earlier this year, urged centre users to make better choices.

“In a $40 million premier health facility, people should be encouraged to ensure their food choices are as healthy as possible,’’ he said.

“Sports facilities, hospitals and schools should set an example.’’

Cr Reibeling said healthy options were up by 15 per cent since March and unhealthy options down 15 per cent.

“We are going in the right direction and by January we should have reduced unhealthy options by a further five percent.”

Earlier in the day, Mayor Rhys Williams described the hot chips at the centre as “the best in the world”.

But patrons may not get a biscuit with their coffee in future.

According to the assessment report, coffee is served with a shortbread biscuit on the side that the cafe should consider removing due to its high energy and fat content.

* ** Other items recommended for approval included a change in the centre’s operating hours and car parking issues.

Councillors recommended a trial period this summer in which the centre will open at 6.30am on Saturdays and Sundays from November 3 to March 3.

A report on attendance levels will be presented to the council at the end of the trial period to determine whether or not to change operating hours permanently.

Councillors also noted that the third and final stage of car parking was completed and customer safety in and around the centre was being monitored.