Record 23 temporary closures as a rat, sewage and E coli are all found
A live rat running toward a food storage area and high levels of E coli in drinking water were some of the reasons seven food businesses in Dublin were forced to temporarily close in November.
The Food Safety Authority of Ireland served a "totally unacceptable" record 23 enforcement orders to food businesses last month, the highest amount in a calendar month to date.
The temporary closure orders served in Dublin include:
• Hui Kee Takeaway at Bulfin Road, Inchicore.
• Vernon Catering, Castleforbes Business Park, Sheriff Street Upper, East Wall.
• Apache Pizza, Dame Street, Temple Bar.
• Blackchurch Inn, Naas Road, Rathcoole.
• Hilan Chinese and Korean BBQ Restaurant, Capel Street.
• Westmanstown Sports Centre restaurant, Dublin 15.
• Salvetas Takeaway and Cafe, Church Street, Finglas.
At Vernon Catering, substantial pigeon faeces were found in a hand basin in the packing area, food labelling printer and computer monitor.
Pigeons were also present in the warehouse and were nesting above the food packing area.
At Apache Pizza in Temple Bar, a live rodent was seen running under the stairs toward the direction of the food storage and wash area.
Raw sewage was also noted on the floor of the customer toilet in the basement area.
At Blackchurch Inn, in Rathcoole, high levels of E coli and disease-causing bacteria were found in drinking water and ice, making both unsafe for human consumption.
At Hilan Chinese and Korean BBQ Restaurant on Capel Street, there was evidence of cockroaches in the kitchen and live cockroaches found on food, including cashew nuts.
In Westmanstown Sports Centre, a dead mouse was found in a trap in the kitchen.
In Salvetas Takeaway and Cafe in Finglas, the premises was described as being covered in dirt and dust, with no attempt made to cover food and equipment.
Food Safety Authority of Ireland chief executive Dr Pamela Byrne condemned the record number of enforcement orders.
"November had the highest amount of enforcement orders in the one month which the FSAI has seen since the legislation was introduced in 1998," she said, describing the record figures as being "totally unacceptable".
"The presence of rodents and other pests presents a grave and immediate danger to consumers' health and food businesses must put in place more robust pest control systems.
"With the Christmas period already under way, food businesses must ensure they maintain high food safety standards," Dr Byrne added.
"I hope in December we see a significant reduction in enforcement orders and improving food safety standards."