9th August 2021

A David and Goliath story without equal.

What is the real reason for the prolonged and coordinated attack on ICook Foods, a family-owned business producing food for Hospitals, Meals on Wheels, and many Nursing Homes?

This treatment of ICook Foods, the victim, exceeds any reasonable food safety management is concerned as the bureaucrats at State and Local levels are charged with administering, this is far more sinister?

The CAA has pondered this matter since becoming involved in supporting Ian Cook and the shocking treatment he has received at the hands of this State’s Health Bureaucracies, and we are very confident the plot has been exposed.

To understand what has happened, the chronology of the events paints a picture in our view of unconscionable behaviours and alleged criminal activity on a monumental scale.

The patented process developed by ICooks is the big prize, and why should you even bother trying to replicate the technology if you can steal it from the inventor as some are clearly intent on doing.

As was first thought, this is not some commercial jostling over a market share.

The competitor, Community Chef, the Government-backed entity, has just changed the commercial rules in collaboration with the Government. The Health Department and the sixteen Council owners; simply do not put contracts up for public tender; they just allocate them to their own business. Competitive tendering is abolished, and Community Chef gets the vast majority of the available work destroying all the competition. ICooks was just one of a number of businesses to be dramatically affected by this strategy putting many out of work across a number of companies. Well in excess of those workers employed at Community Chef as part of the GFC employment strategy.

If the strategy was based just on unfair competition, Community Chef backers achieved their objective very early in the chronology, but they kept going, and the technology developed by ICooks was the apparent target and so crucial that criminality was an acceptable part of their strategy.

This is not the actions of one or two rogue operators but a planned and sustained attack, a conspiracy of a magnitude perhaps never before seen or exposed in this State. These crimes would appear to have been hatched well before the activities of the Health Bureaucrats, both State and Local, started their assault in 2018.

ICooks were putting the finishing touches on a number of very lucrative international contracts with UAE, Singapore, and many other countries keen to access this unique technology when the backers of Community Chef started their move.

The contracts under consideration were worth many millions of dollars which explains why the technology is so coveted.

Interest from an Aboriginal Co-0pertieve keen to provide this food processing technology to local community facilities in South Australia made a sizeable commercial offer for a part share in the business so that the process could be spread across many aboriginal co-operatives providing work and servicing community needs to ensure nutritional meals were supplied to local communities. Negotiations were advanced to the stage that a firm offer by the co-op was on the table and under active consideration by ICooks.

While ICooks were considering the offer from the co-op, plans were afoot by others to steal their technology. ICooks had no idea of what was to follow; they were unwitting commercial lambs being led to bureaucratic slaughter.

The Chronology.

13th Dec 2018    ICooks Passes a rigorous inspection by Health Officials -no problems raised.

1st Feb 2019      A greater Dandenong Council Health Inspector spends several hours sample testing at the facility – no problems raised.

4th Feb 2019      An elderly patient dies at Knox Private Hospital of suspected Listeria. ICooks food was blamed for the listeria poisoning.  She had other comorbidities that caused her death.

18th Feb 2019   Health Inspectors arrive en masse at ICooks for a thorough inspection. – No problems immediately apparent.

21st Feb 2019   An independent Health Inspector tasked by DHHS finds that the elderly patient with suspected listeria did not eat any ICook food. Only food from the Knox Hospital Kitchen was not shut down by a health order. The officer reported it verbally to DHHS on the 21st (Before the ICooks order was signed) and followed up with an email on the 22nd.

21st Feb 2019   At 12.10 pm, ICooks receive notification of the impending shutdown order signed by the Chief Health Officer at about 11 pm that night, with the Official Order served at 4 am on the 22nd Feb.

From this point, all the contracts worth many millions of dollars start to evaporate. Who stood to benefit from this? Who was waiting for ICooks to be liquidated to pick up the IT from Liquidators for chump change? We have no doubt there was a corporate structure in place waiting in the wings while bureaucrats did their thing to destroy ICooks, forcing them into liquidation.

28th Mar 2019    ICooks ban lifted. It took 36 days for the error to be rectified when the DHHS knew before it was signed, to be erroneous—clearly designed to further pressure ICooks into failure.

29th Mar 2019    The State Chief Health Officer nominated ICook Foods on John Faine’s Radio show while DHHS knew that ICooks Foods were innocent since February, a month earlier.

23rd May 2019    Ninety-Six charges for beaches under the Health Act are served on ICook Foods and Ian Cook personally with fines ranging into the millions of dollars, including potential jail time for Ian. –

3rd Oct 2019       All charges are withdrawn after five months. The Government legal team were anxious to negotiate a confidentiality settlement clause with Ian Cook; wonder why? We suspect these charges were only laid to achieve the outcome of silencing Ian Cook; it didn’t work. This action itself reeks of the criminal or civil Tort of Malicious Prosecution, a very serious offence.

All this precedes Slug-Gate.

What is very obvious by this stage is that there are many players in this artifice of criminal behaviour. From the get-go, serious crimes are being perpetrated, and that is before the farce surrounding Slug-Gate.

You would think that having been beaten at every turn, the agency management whoever they are, running this syndicated criminal activity would withdraw and lick their wounds waiting for the Civil repercussion, but you would be wrong; because then came Slug-Gate.

This indicates the desperation to satisfy the greed of the faceless people leading this endeavour. This also highlights the absolute power the agency management must exercise to place even more officials in the firing line to commit criminal acts to achieve their goals.

Unfortunately for all perpetrators, a dedicated team of people incensed by this outrageous assault on ICooks working Pro Bono on a nearly full-time basis put the information together to expose the culprits.

Leading this work are two Police Veterans, retired detectives, that have investigated this matter for nearly two years, meticulously compiling a trove of data that will be provided to Police to assist that investigation lightening the Police load.

As the Police investigation proceeds, the depth and breadth of the crimes committed in this saga will become apparent. Some players will realise their bureaucratic status will not protect them from the criminality that they have been led into.

It is now clear that many people will potentially be charged with serious crimes that could attract substantial jail time.

As the realisation hits, they are not protected; there will be a conga-line to the front door of Police Headquarters with individuals seeking indemnity from prosecution trading the knowledge they possess.

The perpetrators may have done the wrong thing, but now their focus will be on survival or lose everything through the civil and criminal procedures they must inevitably face.

As with all these investigations, it will undoubtedly work on the principle of two idioms for those involved, first in best dressed and he who hesitates is lost.

And the story of the Slug is yet to come.