Wednesday, May 26, 2010

17 food outlets shut down in capital for violations

12 May 2010, The Gulf Today

Seventeen food outlets have been shut down by the authorities in Abu Dhabi during the current year for consistent non-compliance with food safety rules and regulations posing risks to public health.
The Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA) has ordered closure of the food service establishments in different parts of the emirate for repeatedly flouting the rules, even after warnings and fines were imposed on them.
"Of the 17 closures, 15 are in the city of Abu Dhabi and the rest in Al Gharbiya of the Western region," according to a senior ADFCA official.
"The outlets shut down in the city included eight restaurants, two refreshments outlets, two cafeterias, one supermarket, one grocery and one foodstuff firm, while the Western region saw the closure of one cafeteria and a foodstuff establishment," he disclosed.
Mohamed Jalal Al Reyaysa, PR and Communication Director at the ADFCA, said that Hatem Iranian Restaurant at Marina Mall was the last to face closure orders on May 6. Qasr Al Ain Cafeteria at Ghayathi in the Western region was closed in the month of January.
"The same outlet had been ordered to close last year too, and resumed its operation after undergoing penal actions, but in a short period of time inspectors found it repeating the food safety violations. The second food outlet to face closure orders in January was Saif Refreshments at Al Shamikha area," he explained.
Reyaysa said three restaurants, Al Eqab Restaurant and Hadeeqat Al Wahda Restaurant on Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Road and Al Kasir Restaurant on the Abu Dhabi Corniche Road, were shut down in February.
"Falcom Tib Supermarket and Najm Shiraz Grocery at Musaffa Industrial Area, Burj Al Arab Restaurant at Umm Nar area, Rabeea Restaurant on Zayed 1 Road and Farha Restaruant at Musaffah Economic Zone are the outlets that downed shutters in March," he added.
"The food establishments shut down in the month of April included Ramla Trading Company at Musaffah Economic Zone, National Company for Tourism and Hotels in Al Ruwais in the Western Region, Zahrat Al Samha Cafeteria at Al Samha, Dar Al Khair Refreshments at Umm Al Nar, Maharat Al Khaleej Cafeteria at Al Shamikha and Wahat Madina Al Marah Restaurant at Marina Mall," he detailed.
Reyaysa said, "The reasons for the closure of these outlets vary from one to another and include unhygienic practices, presence of insects and cockroaches in the kitchen, lack of proper drainage system, mixing different food items in the refrigerator such as meat, fish, vegetables and fruits, lack of proper garbage disposal, not possessing necessary papers from the authorities and so on."
According to Reyaysa, the closure of a food outlet is always preceded by repeated warnings, fines and awareness drives.
"When all those efforts fail, we are left with no other option but to order the closure of the outlet that functions in utter disregard for public health and the law of the land. The health and safety of the consumer is the red-line that should not be crossed in any circumstance," he noted.
"Each of these violations is fraught with potential danger to the health of the consumers. Once the closed outlets make amends and rectify the shortcomings, the reopening of the outlets can be considered," said Reyaysa.

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