Restaurant inspection in Calgary starting to work

The Calgary Herald reports that the number of complaints lodged by customers against food establishments in the Calgary region has jumped by almost six per cent in three years.

Figures also show a nearly 40 per cent increase in the number of restaurants, bars and grocery stores closed for food violations — ranging from thawing meat to mouse droppings in the kitchen — during the same period.

Last year, health inspectors temporarily closed 93 food outlets until they fixed the problems, according to statistics compiled by Alberta Health Services.

Rob Bradbury, director of environmental health for the Calgary region of Alberta Health Services, was quoted as saying,

“The numbers are huge. Our mandate is to protect public health. It’s a combination of our vigilance during routine inspections and input we receive from the public as a result of complaints.”

I picked up on that last theme during an interview with AM 660 radio in Calgary this morning, stating,

“The technology is out there – the blackberry I’m using to talk with you can take pictures and video. Just go on youtube and see the videos consumers have taken of yucky restaurant conditions.”