Mass. restaurant Kitty’s closed after 39 sick from suspected Salmonella

ABC News reports a Massachusetts restaurant has been shut down until further notice after nearly 40 people reported getting sick during a suspected salmonella outbreak.

The North Reading Board of Health posted an advisory saying the state Public Health Department had received complaints from 39 people who said they got sick at Kitty’s late last month. The state confirmed nine cases of salmonella and 30 suspected cases of salmonella.

The source of the outbreak was traced to the antipasto salad.

The restaurant was closed July 5 and allowed to reopen Friday after a sanitization but has since closed again.

Staff at UK food place put food gnawed by mice back on shelves

Martin Elvery of Get West London reports that rat droppings hanging from the ceilings of rooms where fruit and vegetables were stored, products being repackaged and sold after being gnawed by mice and a cement mixer allegedly being used to mix marinated chicken are just some of the horrors Ealing’s food safety officers have uncovered over the past year.

The council carries out thorough, regular checks of all premises serving and selling food in the borough which are categorised for their level of risk on a sliding scale of A to E.

Whilst the vast majority – 82% this year – complied fully with food standards, they have had to take swift action to deal with a few. A report summarising them was presented to the council’s general purpose committee on Tuesday, June 26.

When officers visited food store rooms used to keep fruit and vegetables based at a store in The Green, in Southall, they were found to be riddled with rat droppings.

The report states rat and mouse droppings were found throughout at wall and floor junctions, and on high level shelving. They were also found hanging from the ceiling and on the door leading to the rear store room.

One positive for E. coli, 30 others ill after eating at North Carolina restaurant

Health officials say dozens of people became very ill after eating at a restaurant in Taylorsville in Alexander County.

Health officials said one person tested positive for E. coli, and more than 30 others are also sick after eating chicken at the restaurant.

The bacterial infection causes severe stomach cramps, diarrhea, vomiting and sometimes a low-grade fever.

Officials say the restaurant has been cooperating and will remain open after all the infected products have been removed.

Mouse shit kebabs: UK takeaway closed

Tanveer Mann of Metro reports a kebab shop in Manchester was so filthy it had mouse droppings littered in every single room, a court has heard. The droppings were found in food preparation and customer areas at Go Shawarma, in Salford, as well as on the floor, on shelves, old work equipment, next to wrapped food and even alongside cleaning materials. Food waste was piled up inside the shop and rubbish bags outside.
The situation was so grim the manager agreed to close the premises for two days to get on top of the problems, but then refused to be interviewed by council officers about the offence.

The conditions discovered by environtmental health inspectors at the Go Shawarma takeaway in Union Terrace, Salford. Virtually every room had mouse droppings.

Abdulraziq Ahmad, the owner of the takeaway on Bury Old Road, pleaded guilty to failing to adequately control pests, failing to have adequate provision for the disposal of waste and failing to have a documented food safety management system. He was fined a total of £2,250 and ordered to pay £1,000 costs and £75 victim surcharge when he appeared at Salford and Manchester magistrates court on June 19.

Study says: Communication is most important skill for public-health types

The professional development of environmental public health professionals in Canada is guided by a set of 133 discipline-specific competencies. Given the diversity of practice in environmental public health, certain competencies may be more important to job effectiveness depending on a practitioner’s context. However, the most important competencies to job effectiveness by context are unknown. Thus, the objectives of this study were to prioritize the discipline-specific competencies according to their importance to job effectiveness, and determine if importance varied by demographic variables.

A quantitative discrete-choice method termed best–worst scaling was used to determine the relative importance of competencies. Discrete choice information was electronically collected and analyzed using Hierarchical Bayesian analysis.

Our analysis indicates that communication was most important to job effectiveness relative to the other categories. Competency statements within each category differed in their importance to job effectiveness. Further, management and front-line practitioners differed in the importance placed on five of the eight categories.

This information can be used to guide new training opportunities, thereby investing in the capacity of environmental health professionals to better protect population health.

Prioritizing professional competencies in environmental public health: A best-worst scaling experiment

Aug. 2018

Environmental Health Review, vol. 61 no. 2, pg 50-63

Lauren E. Wallar,* Scott A. McEwen,* Jan M. Sargeant,* Nicola J. Mercer, Andrew Papadopoulos*

 https://doi.org/10.5864/d2018-014

http://pubs.ciphi.ca/doi/abs/10.5864/d2018-014

Everyone’s got a camera: Wendy’s in Oklahoma edition

Tristen Land of 6 On the Scene reports a video shared on social media shows a mouse inside a bag of hamburger buns at a Wendy’s restaurant in Catoosa and now corporate is investigating.

Employees say they not only found the mice disturbing but also the cigarettes left on the counters at their sandwich stations. Now they believe something needs to be done.

Especially if the mice were smoking.

“I go in and I see it’s moving around in the bag and you can see like rat feces and all that and it was just disgusting,” said Skylar Frame.

Skylar was at work yesterday when she says she saw mice racing through the buns. She says her coworkers reported it to a manager but were told to continue serving customers.

“I was like what am I supposed to do with the buns and she’s like take the stack, take it down and go use some other buns,” Said fellow employee Samantha Nibbelink.

“There was no stopping, so we had to keep going.” Said employee Vincent Vang.

Today the restaurant was open to customers. Wendy’s sent us this statement, saying in part,

“We immediately launched an investigation with our pest control vendor and internal quality assurance experts to ensure immediate and appropriate action is taken. We have stringent procedures in place to ensure a safe and well-maintained restaurant.”

Uh-huh.

Surveys still suck: Restaurant inspection disclosure in Singapore

The aim of this study was to examine the consumer use of Singapore’s letter-based grading information disclosure system and its influence on dining establishment choice.

We used data from a national survey of 1533 households collected from 2012 to 2013 in Singapore to assess (i) the proportion of adults who refer to the letter grade before dining and (ii) the impact of the letter grade on their willingness to dine at an establishment. We used multivariable logistic regression to account for the independent effects of socio-demographic factors. The proportion of respondents who referred to a letter grade before dining was 64.5% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 62.1%, 66.9%). Propensity for referral differed by dining frequency, ethnicity and employment.

Fewer respondents were willing to dine at a ‘C’ (lower) graded establishment [10.3% (95% CI = 8.8%, 11.8%)] compared to a ‘B’ graded establishment [85.3% (95% CI = 83.5%, 87.0%)]. Willingness to dine at a ‘C’ graded establishment differed by dining frequency, housing type and citizenship. The letter-based grading information disclosure system in Singapore is commonly used among Singaporeans and influences establishment choice.

Our findings suggest that information disclosure systems can be an effective tool in influencing consumer establishment choice and may be useful to help improve food safety in retail food establishments. The implementation of such information disclosure systems should be considered in other countries where it has yet to be introduced and be periodically assessed for its effectiveness and to identify areas requiring improvements.

Use of the letter-based grading information disclosure system and its influence on dining establishment choice in Singapore: A cross-sectional study

Food Control, Volume 90, August 2018, Pages 105-112, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodcont.2018.02.038

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0956713518300847

 

Fancy food ain’t safe food Irish edition: 9 dead mice discovered in ‘luxury dessert’ business

A “luxury homemade dessert” business has been ordered to close after food safety inspectors discovered nine dead mice in its production area, and mouse droppings on baking trays.

Sweetness Luxury Homemade Desserts in Ardcavan, Co Wexford, was the subject of an inspection by environmental health officers with the Health Service Executive (HSE) in May.

During the inspection, nine dead mice were found in the production area and associated stores directly off the production area. Seven of the dead mice were found below and behind one of the chest freezers in the goods inwards/dispatch area.

One of the dead mice was found in the small store directly off the cold room, while another was observed in a store area behind the partition wall adjacent to the main oven.

There was “prolific evidence” of mice droppings observed in the premises including on all food shelving; on the floor beside the open food packaging shelving; and at all wall/floor joins throughout the dispatch area that opens into the food production area.

Droppings were also observed on shelving and amongst electrical cables and files on the floor of the office in the food production area.

More were observed in baking trays on a trolley stored beside the main oven and adjacent to the wall cladding where other mice droppings had been identified in the production room.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) has ordered the business to close for breaches of food safety legislation.

Sweetness Luxury Homemade Desserts was one of 11 businesses ordered to close during the month, which was the highest number of any month this year.

Another business, Addison Lodge in Glasnevin, Dublin, was told to close its doors after dead and live crawling insects including earwigs, woodlice and spiders were found on the premises.

The FSAI said these posed a risk to food safety as insects can transmit disease. Live flies were noted throughout the premises and the windows were left open.

There was also a build up of ingrained grease, dirt, food debris, and dust. Additionally a “foul odour” was noted emanating from the grease trap in the kitchen.

Everyone’s got a camera: Roach video surfaces of popular Atlanta restaurant

A video of roaches in the kitchen area of a popular metro Atlanta restaurant, The Flying Biscuit Cafe, has people talking. 

In the 30-second video, posted to YouTube on June 5, viewers can see roaches crawling along the walls and on the clean dish rack. Links to the video were shared to Reddit and Twitter.

In an email, Flying Biscuit spokesperson Elisa Suri said “the video in question was filmed last year. Following this incident, we revisited our pest management process to address any potential pest concerns.” Suri went on to say the health of Flying Biscuit customers is the restaurant’s first priority.

The Candler Park location received a 92 on their food service inspection in March and an 89 on their inspection in August of 2017.

YouTube user Katherine Todd uploaded the video and noted in the caption that “part of the server sidework is to literally rinse all the dead roaches out of the espresso machine. They were sometimes found in the uncovered apple butters in the fridge.”

Flying Biscuit said the video was uploaded by a relative of a former employee, but did not elaborate.

Everyone’s got a camera: Burger King edition

Tiffany Wong of Fox 8 reports a video of rats dashing around a French Quarter restaurant is getting a lot of attention online.

Pest control experts say it’s a common sight this time of year, and businesses can take preventative measures.

The Facebook video shows several rats scurrying over counter tops, a cutting board and plates after-hours in the eatery. Some seeing the video for the first time say it’s no big deal.

“I would take that with a pinch of salt. I mean, it is what it is. I wouldn’t worry about that. I would just go somewhere else, I’d walk by,” Sylvia Currie said.

“I mean, we live by the river. There’s river rats, and I’ve been to a restaurant that has like, you see a rat running back every now and then,” Stephen Medina said.

Others, however, say there’s no way they’d eat there.

“We’re spending our good hard-earned money and actually bringing our families here to eat, and that type of distraction I think would be a real big turn off to people,” John Haluska said.

The State Health Department said they would address the issue if they knew which restaurant it was. 

“Showing us the video of the rodents, yes, that can be shocking, that can be oh my goodness. It’s a shock value, but you’re not being helpful. You need to tell us where it is and then we can go in and do what we do,” said Tenney Sibley with the State Health Department. 

The department said it regularly inspects restaurants, depending on their risk factors.

“If we’re doing a regular, a routine inspection and we come across rodents or rodent droppings, or some kind of indications there are rodents, absolutely. That’s what we would call a critical violation,” Sibley said.

Patricia Talorico and Meredith Newman of Delaware Online report a video of rats scurrying among among hamburger buns at a Brandywine Hundred Burger King led to the eatery’s closure Friday and over the weekend “due to gross unsanitary conditions.” 

The video was posted at 7:53 p.m. May 31 by Wilmington resident Shantel Johnson on her Facebook page. It’s unclear how Johnson obtained the video at the store at 2802 Concord Pike. 

Her post said: “Don’t go to Burger King on 202 (rats are) running all over their buns … (at) Wilmington Delaware Concord Pike.”

The state Division of Public Health Office of Food Protection received a complaint on June 1 and video footage appeared to show rodents in bags of rolls at the Burger King at 2802 Concord Pike, according to Andrea Wojcik, spokeswoman for the Division of Public Health.

State health inspectors went to the restaurant at 11:45 a.m. June 1 to conduct a visual inspection of the premises and the complaint was founded, according to a report.

According to the inspection report, rodent droppings were found on and inside of the hamburger and chicken sandwich rolls. The plastic covering and the rolls themselves were chewed by the rodents. Wooden pallets that the rolls were stored on had droppings on them, the report said.  

Droppings also were found in the floor near the ice machine, the water heater, under dry storage, near syrup storage boxes and behind fryers, the report said.

Seven pallets of buns and rolls were discarded due to the contamination, the report said. The inspector noted that during her visit, chicken sandwich rolls were being used. They were then discarded. 

In addition to the rodent droppings, the restaurant’s ceiling was leaking in the kitchen near the storage and food line, the report said. Flies were coming from a drain close to where the rolls and buns are stored.