Friday 15 November 2019

Health inspectors find hygiene failings at Donald Trump's Florida resort

US President Donald Trump speaks at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida (Alex Brandon/AP)
US President Donald Trump speaks at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida (Alex Brandon/AP)

Florida health inspectors found 15 hygiene violations at US President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort, reports show.

The violations were discovered in January, days before Mr Trump hosted Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for a diplomatic visit.

State inspectors allowed the luxury resort's main restaurant and beach club grill to remain open as staff scrambled to make several immediate corrections.

Among the "high priority" problems described as "potentially hazardous" were faulty fridges with meats stored well above the required temperature.

Other issues included smoked salmon being served without undergoing "proper parasite destruction".

A hand-washing sink for employees ran water that was not hot enough.

Stephen Lawson, spokesman for the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, said the violations were the result of a routine inspection and were not prompted by any consumer complaints or food-borne illnesses.

"The infractions were corrected on site, and the establishment was immediately brought into compliance," Mr Lawson said.

The January checks were not the first time inspectors have found problems at Mar-a-Lago.

Over the last three years, records show the club has been cited 78 times for violations that included chefs handling food without washing their hands, dirty cutting boards, a slicer "soiled with old food debris" and an "accumulation of "black/green mould-like substance" in the ice machine.

Mr Lawson said inspectors will return to Mar-a-Lago for another unannounced visit before the end of the year.

The Trump Organisation, which operates the family's business empire, did not immediately comment.

Mr Trump is a frequent visitor to his private club in Palm Beach.

The president often refers to the property as the Winter White House. He hosted a summit with Chinese leader Xi Jinping there last weekend.


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