Three city restaurants closed over food safety
Three Dublin restaurants were closed by the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) last month.
They were among eight across the capital, Co Kilkenny, Co Tipperary, Co Limerick and Co Kildare to be shut down over serious breaches of food safety legislation.
In Dublin, closure orders were served on Okra Green, 1 Island View, Howth; Govinda's, 83 Abbey Street Middle, lifted after three days; and Diamond Pizza, Drumcondra Road Lower, lifted after three days.
The FSAI did not specify the reasons they were closed.
However, it said that across the country, inspectors noted evidence of a fly infestation in one kitchen, a cockroach infestation and temperature and cleaning records being filled out in advance with non-factual details.
They also found a bag of frozen breaded chicken thawing at room temperature.
The inspectors observed a bird flying out of a kitchen through the back door, and reported surfaces and equipment were poor in some premises, as well as a lack of evidence that staff were being trained in food safety procedures.
Closure orders are issued when there is a perceived danger to public health at the premises or where an improvement order is not complied with.
Orders can force the rest- aurants to close all or part of the food premises immediately.
FSAI chief executive Dr Pamela Byrne called the breaches "disturbing" and "reckless".
"It is extremely disturbing that a food business would fill out their records in advance with completely non-factual information," she said.
"This behaviour demonstrates a reckless attitude to food safety and a disregard for the health of their customers."
She said that during last month, inspectors detected numerous serious breaches.
"It is completely unacceptable that workers in some food businesses are unable to demonstrate adequate food hygiene knowledge and skills," Dr Byrne said.
"Some food businesses are failing to provide high food safety standards in their premises and among their staff.
"These failures have the pot- ential to cause a serious risk to consumer health, which has been identified in this month's enforcements.
"Food businesses must act responsibly to prevent these serious breaches."