Saudi Arabia steps up raids on Yanbu eateries after E. coli infection, asks consumers to report food safety violations

Arab News reports that inspection teams from the Yanbu municipality shut down 10 eateries for various violations last year. Many restaurant staffers who were found working in unhygienic conditions had been subjected to medical tests.

A total of 45 bacteria contamination cases were detected during the inspection, and there were 18 workers infected with bacteria, including E.coli.

Speaking to Arab News, Abdul Aali Al-Sheikh, head of the Ya nbu municipality, said inspection teams collected about 890 samples from restaurants, cafeterias, bakeries and outlets for soft drinks during 2011. The affected workers were barred from working at eateries until they recovered from infections. They were allowed to resume duty only after producing a fitness certificate from the Ministry of Health.

“The municipality is giving top priority to ensure environment health, as it is directly related to public health. Subsequently, we will intensify raids on restaurants, food warehouses, and candy stores to ensure that they are preparing dishes and keeping foodstuffs in hygienic conditions,” he said while urging citizens and foreigners to extend cooperation to the municipality in this regard through informing about those eateries that violate health and hygienic regulations.