Monday 10 December 2018

Inspection finds unsuspecting diners served in rodent-infested kitchens at 'filthy eateries'

Report: Dr Pamela Byrne of the Food Safety Authority. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Report: Dr Pamela Byrne of the Food Safety Authority. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

Unsuspecting diners were served up food from filthy eateries with rodent-infested kitchens and storage areas that doubled as bedrooms.

The kitchen horrors were uncovered by inspectors with the Food Safety Authority, who had to slap closure orders on the premises earlier this year, according to unpublished reports obtained by the Irish Independent.

A catalogue of shocking breaches was found, including one premises where water was leaking through the ceiling of the preparation area and "ponding" in the floor.

The first floor goods area was used as a bedroom and a mattress with bed linen was found on the floor, while a large, greasy wheelie bin was in the main preparation area.

In another restaurant a large plastic bin used to store poppadoms was "ingrained with dirt". A large bowl containing a mixture of raw egg and flour was stored on a worktop in a warm kitchen atmosphere.

In another restaurant there was no hot water available.

Walls, floors and ceilings within the food business were "filthy, heavily stained and grease-laden".

Another inspection report noted how a "staff member was observed cleaning a rainwater gully with his hands and a brush. The water was filthy and he proceeded to wipe his hands in his apron which would be worn in the kitchen while preparing food."

A separate report details rodent droppings on food, and near food preparation sinks.

Asked to comment, Dr Pamela Byrne, chief executive of the Food Safety Authority, said the main areas where food premises fall down are in cleaning, lack of pest control, and inappropriate storage of food.

However, she said overall "the level of compliance in Irish food businesses is very good".

Irish Independent

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