Everyone has a camera Toronto bakery edition: ‘Disgusting’ video shows mice feeding on pastry

CTV News reports the pastries in the window of a downtown Toronto confection shop were supposed to lure hungry humans, but they ended up attracting mice.

Mohammad Valipour captured the ravenous rodents on video as they nibbled on a tray of baklava visible through a window inside Meli Baklava & Chocolate Bar.

He told CTV Toronto he believes he could also see feces around the trays. “It was disgusting,” Valipour said.

Co-owner Julie Kyriakaki says the building has a rodent problem but is adamant that none of the pastries that sit out for display are served to the public.

Kyriakaki showed off drawers full of desserts under the countertop that she says she and her staff use to keep the food safe from pests.

“Even if I didn’t have food here, the mice could still be on the window, because they go everywhere” she said. She also showed off mousetraps inside the store.

Meli Baklava & Chocolate Bar displays a green DineSafe sign in its window, indicating that it has met food safety standards outlined in the Ontario Food Premises Regulation and municipal by-laws. The sign shows the business was last inspected on Feb. 6, 2017.

The bakery has passed four inspections, the first in November 2015, according to online DineSafe records. It received two infractions in that time, one for failing to ensure the presence of someone who holds a valid food handler’s certificate and another for not having a test substance for ensuring utensils are properly sterilized.

The sweet shop, which is rated 4.5 out of five on the website TripAdvisor, is one of several food kiosks housed inside the Queen Live Fresh Food Market on Queen Street West.

NYC briefly shuts down sushi shop for live roaches

A midtown sushi restaurant that had been wracking up health violations for months when inspectors found evidence of rats, roaches and mice was shuttered for three days last week, records show.

EEL_TH_C_^_THUIQFuji Sushi, located at 238 W. 56th St., was forced to close by the Health Department on Sept. 8 when inspectors found live roaches in the restaurant.

Residents spot rodents in restaurant at mall in Dubai

Everyone’s got a video camera these days, and they like to use them.

rat.restaurant.dubai.feb.15Pictures have emerged of rodents running loose in a restaurant located right outside a popular mall in Dubai.

Passersby have clicked pictures of rats running on food containers and have posted them on the social media, enraging many and some vowing never to eat at the venue.

One resident took on the social media and complained that he got sick after eating at that particular place.

The restaurant did not respond to emails sent by this website. However, master developer Nakheel, the operator of Ibn Battuta Mall, was quick to confirm that it is aware of the issue and has already taken action.

rat.restaurant.dubai.2.15“We are aware of this issue and have taken immediate action to rectify the situation, including alerting the appropriate authorities,” a Nakheel spokesperson told Emirates 24|7.

“This restaurant is a standalone establishment located outside the mall itself, and, under the terms and conditions of its contract, is responsible for its own health, safety and hygiene management. As mall operator, our role is to ensure that such obligations are met,” the Nakheel spokesperson added.

Why inspectors fret about rats: Rodents as hosts of infectious diseases

Rodents are recognized as hosts of more than 60 zoonotic diseases that represent a serious threat to human health (Meerburg et al. 2009, Luis et al. 2013). This special issue emerges from a workshop organized in Bangkok at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of Kasetsart University and supported by the French ANR project CERoPath (Community Ecology of Rodents and their Pathogens in a Southeast Asian changing environment), which aimed at better understanding the relationships between rodent-borne diseases, rodents and their habitats using intensive field works, serology, and molecular screenings.

sq-willard-crispin-glover-rat-nlThe main objective of this workshop was to join ecologists, biologists, and epidemiologists to give an overview on the importance of rodents as hosts and reservoirs of parasitic and infectious diseases. Most of presentations given in the workshop focused in Southeast Asia, a hotspot of both infectious emerging diseases (Coker et al. 2011) and biodiversity at threat due to dramatic changes in land use (Morand et al. 2014).

A first challenge is related to the invasion or range expansion of rodents. The black rat (Rattus rattus), Norway rat (Rattus norvegicus), Asian house rat, (Rattus tanezumi) and Pacific rat (Rattus exulans) like the house mice (Mus musculus), have dramatically expanded their geographic range as a consequence of human activities (Aplin et al. 2011). All of these Rattus species originated in Asia, and can be found in sympatry due to their synanthropic behavior (McFarlane et al. 2012). These rodents have been implicated (Kosoy et al., this issue), and still are implicated (Kuo et al. 2011), in the emergence and spread of plague, murine typhus, scrub typhus, leptospirosis, hantavirus hemorrhagic fever, among others. A better comprehension of the range extension mechanisms and consequences in term of infectious diseases’ risks would require investigation of the genetics and immunology of these rodent species (Himsworth et al., this issue) as well on the ecological interactions among pathogens, vectors, and rodents. Gutiérrez et al. (this issue) in their review attempt to summarize and bridge some knowledge gaps in the transmission and distribution routes, and in the dynamics and composition of Bartonella-infection in rodents and their flea parasites.

A second challenge is that in order to better understand disease ecology and parasite transmission, it must be considered that not all hosts are equally involved in parasite transmission as some species (and individuals) can be responsible for a disproportionate number of transmission events (Paull et al. 2012). Some habitats or landscapes may also disproportionally enhance transmission or persistence of parasite and/or vector (Bordes et al. 2013). Indeed, by carrying and disseminating parasites across multiple habitats, generalist or synanthropic rodents could enhance both host-switching and spill-over to other rodent reservoirs and directly or indirectly to humans.

rat.restaurantSeveral articles in this special issue suggest high diversity of pathogens and parasites circulating among diversified communities of rodents across various habitats, such as Rickettsia spp. in Taiwan (Kuo et al., this issue), Bartonella spp. in Vietnam (Hoang et al., this issue) and in Thailand (Jiyipong et al., in this issue), leptospirosis in Vietnam (Hoang et al., this issue), zoonotic viruses in Vietnam (Cuong et al., this issue), and zoonotic helminths in Thailand (Chaisiri et al., this issue).

This special issue calls for a more thorough investigation of rodent-borne diseases taking into account the ecology of rodents in their habitats. Taken together, the studies presented in this special issue stress the need to identify the mechanisms affecting pathogen diversity and infection within and between rodent species and to explain why some rodent species seem to be more resilient to greater habitat disturbance. Future research should monitor a variety of rodent pathogens simultaneously, including directly-transmitted specific pathogens and vector-borne pathogens with varying degrees of specificity.

Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases. January 2015, 15(1): 1-2.

Morand S., Jittapalapong S., and Kosoy Michael

http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/vbz.2015.15.1.intro#utm_source=ETOC&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=vbz

Rodents roaming in NZ takeaway shop because of ‘poverty trap’

The owner of a Christchurch takeaway shop that was shut down after inspectors found “extensive rodent infestation” is blaming a “poverty trap” for the pest problem.

The takeaway was closed after a council inspection in March found it breached food hygiene regulations. The case was referred to the Ministry of Primary ratatouille..chefjpgIndustries.

The Christchurch City Council did more than 780 inspections of food premises in the city from January 1 to May 10 this year.

The senior food safety officer said the restaurant that was closed had been infested with rodents.

“There were rodent droppings everywhere. It generally needed a thorough clean. There were a lot of back rooms filled with miscellaneous stuff that didn’t really relate to the business and shouldn’t have been there.

“They hadn’t been cleaning around the junk and so it gave a nice little place for the mice to nest in.”

However, the owner of the takeaway shop said he was “caught in a poverty trap”.

“I’m going broke, I can’t afford to keep up with everything. They don’t want small businesses to survive. It all costs too much to keep going.”

Calling lasercats: Pennsylvania pizza owner accused of ‘food terrorism by mice,’ sabotaging rivals

A Pennsylvania pizza shop owner is in jail after he allegedly dumped live vermin in his competitors’ restaurants in a case cops are calling "food terrorism by mice."

Nikolas Galiatsatos, 47, who owns Nina’s Bella Pizzeria in Upper Darby walked into Verona Pizza, a few blocks away from his shop on Monday afternoon carrying a bag and asking to use the restroom.

When Fanis Facas, the owner of Verona’s, went to inspect the bathroom after hearing a banging noise, he discovered footprints on the toilet and a bag tucked into the ceiling. He turned the bag over to two officers that happened to be eating in the restaurant.

Cops suspected it was a possible drug deal, but instead of finding drugs in the bag, they found several mice, according to the Delaware County Daily Times.

Galiatsatos was then seen walking across the street to Uncle Nick’s Pizza. Cops said after he left the second pizza parlor they found another bag containing five living mice and one dead mouse in a trash can.

He was promptly arrested and now faces charges of criminal mischief, disorderly conduct, harassment and cruelty to animals.
 

Seek and ye shall find; FDA finds problems at egg farms

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is finding problems at egg farms beyond the Iowa operations linked to last summer’s salmonella outbreak. The agency inspected 35 farms from September to December and released a report today on its findings.

Those 35 farms, located in Ohio, Maine, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Utah and Washington, were picked for inspection because they had been associated with pervious outbreaks or had a history of poor compliance. Nine separate companies operate the 35 farms. The names were not released.

Twelve of the farms needed to take action to fix problems. Eleven others did not. Evaluations of the remaining 12 farms are still pending, mostly in Washington state.

Most of the problems cited by the agency involve inadequate record keeping.

Farms are required to document compliance a variety of issues, including rodent monitoring and compliance with biosecurity measures.
 

Waiter, there’s a roach on you: mall food courts overrun by roaches, rodents, mallrats

Australia is an Internet backwater.

In that context, the best thing about Australia is, McDonalds.

Every café and bakery and bookstore, they’ll provide 15 minutes of wi-fi if a purchase is made. Hotels will sell it to guests at $10/hour (I’m not making this up).

Not McDonalds – free wi-fi at many of their stores.

So I’ve been hanging out at a mall in Brisbane’s CBD (central business district) for the past few days, tapping McDonalds’ free wi-fi.

I never hang out at the mall.

Food courts and restaurants in shopping malls are particularly vulnerable to roach and rodent infestations because clothing stores, electronics outlets and other mall standbys aren’t subject to health regulations or inspections, and pests often sneak into malls by hiding in shipping and packaging boxes.

Kevin Chinnia, manager of Montgomery County’s health inspectors, told the Washington Examiner,

"Malls are a wide-open space, and it’s a lot more difficult to manage than if you have a stand-alone structure that you can monitor yourself.”

Virginia and Maryland health inspectors cited roughly three-quarters of all mall food vendors for violating critical health regulations during the past year, according to an analysis of health records at 12 local malls conducted by The Washington Examiner.

The Food and Drug Administration defines critical violations as those posing an "imminent health hazard" to diners. Such violations range from improper hand washing to serving contaminated food, and, depending on the severity of the infraction, can lead to a restaurant losing its food service license.

Local health officials spotted live rodents, rodent droppings or cockroaches — dead and alive, clinging to food preparation machines and even to workers — at more than 10 percent of mall eateries.
 

Waiter, there’s a roach on you: mall food courts overrun by roaches, rodents, mallrats

Australia is an Internet backwater.

In that context, the best thing about Australia is, McDonalds.

Every café and bakery and bookstore, they’ll provide 15 minutes of wi-fi if a purchase is made. Hotels will sell it to guests at $10/hour (I’m not making this up).

Not McDonalds – free wi-fi at many of their stores.

So I’ve been hanging out at a mall in Brisbane’s CBD (central business district) for the past few days, tapping McDonalds’ free wi-fi.

I never hang out at the mall.

Food courts and restaurants in shopping malls are particularly vulnerable to roach and rodent infestations because clothing stores, electronics outlets and other mall standbys aren’t subject to health regulations or inspections, and pests often sneak into malls by hiding in shipping and packaging boxes.

Kevin Chinnia, manager of Montgomery County’s health inspectors, told the Washington Examiner,

"Malls are a wide-open space, and it’s a lot more difficult to manage than if you have a stand-alone structure that you can monitor yourself.”

Virginia and Maryland health inspectors cited roughly three-quarters of all mall food vendors for violating critical health regulations during the past year, according to an analysis of health records at 12 local malls conducted by The Washington Examiner.

The Food and Drug Administration defines critical violations as those posing an "imminent health hazard" to diners. Such violations range from improper hand washing to serving contaminated food, and, depending on the severity of the infraction, can lead to a restaurant losing its food service license.

Local health officials spotted live rodents, rodent droppings or cockroaches — dead and alive, clinging to food preparation machines and even to workers — at more than 10 percent of mall eateries.
 

More rats: rodents close Pennsylvania state capital cafeteria

The cafeteria in the Pennsylvania capital building where the governor and other state legislators hang out, form cliques and toss around tater tots, has not been inspected in four years – despite a state law requiring annual checks — and is now closed after an infestation of rodents was discovered.

Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner said Thursday he received assurances in 2005 that the state Agriculture Department would inspect the facility, and his auditors later received false assurances that it was being inspected regularly.

Last week, Agriculture Department inspectors finally arrived at the ground-floor cafeteria, a popular coffee and lunch spot. They found a "severe" rodent infestation, including an "excessive" amount of rodent droppings on food preparation equipment and in cabinets, utensil bins and elsewhere. The droppings indicate the presence of live mice and are considered an imminent health risk.

The ground-floor cafeteria is now closed and is not expected to reopen until January.