In the past, Chinese businesses, especially restaurants have come under scrutiny for the quality of foods they prepare and sell to locals. In this regard, the Government Analyst Food and Drug Department (GA-FDD) has conducted a survey to see how safe and clean those foods are for human consumption.
Director of the Department, Marlon Cole told Inews that such a survey had become important, especially since a Chinese restaurant is located at the corner of almost every street, not only in the capital city but in outlying areas.
Although the survey was conducted on restaurants only in Georgetown, he assured that annual inspections will be conducted on all restaurants across the country by the GA-FDD’s health officers in all 10 Administrative Regions.
Moreover, those officers will also begin investigating if a complaint is made against a food establishment.
“The public health officers in the regions would do the inspections at the Chinese restaurants and I believe it’s annual inspections and for the city it would be done by the City Public Health Department…if there is a complaint, an investigation can be launched,” Cole stated.
The findings coming out from the survey, the Director informed, should be presented and handed over soon before it gets into the public domain.
According to him, the study focused on the environmental conditions of the restaurant inclusive of the air and water quality, the sanitation of the restaurants’ surfaces and utensils and more importantly, sanitation of the hands of the workers.
Only recently, the poor state of sanitation at some Chinese restaurants along the Corentyne Coast was discussed at the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne).
Head of the Regional Health Committee, Zamal Hussain, has said health is of paramount importance to the residents of Region Six.
Visits were made to several Chinese restaurants along the Corentyne and found what appeared to be bat dung swept up and left in a corner at some restaurants. The operator of that restaurant told this publication that he had been told to clean the inside and surroundings of the restaurant, and he did just that before reopening.
In another restaurant, a drum with water which had turned green was situated in front of the restaurant and there was an open urinal a few feet away.
That restaurant owner said the water was not for washing hands. According to the woman, the water in the drum is used to clean the urinal. The woman acknowledged that it was weeks since it had rained, and as such, the water had become discoloured.
At the same restaurant, the operator showed this publication a standpipe which she said was to facilitate persons with water to wash their hands.
She then turned on the tap to prove that there was running water but below the tap was a drain which was infested with maggots.