The last quarter of this year saw 'intense' inspections, said ADFASA Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: Since the start of this year, the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA) closed nine restaurants and food establishments in the cities of Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Al Dhafra region.

A report issued by the authority said that the cancellation decisions were issued as a result of these establishments committing serious and clear violations that cause harm to public health, most notably the low level of cleanliness and the presence of insects.

In food preparation places at the violating outlets, non-halal food was sold and prepared without permits, and a number of food poisoning cases were proven.

The report said that the last quarter of the current year, witnessed intense supervisory activity by the Authority’s food safety inspectors on restaurants and food establishments in various parts of the emirate of Abu Dhabi, which resulted in the administrative closure of a number of restaurants and food establishments in Abu Dhabi for violating Law No. 2 of 2008 regarding food in the emirate of Abu Dhabi, as well as its danger to public health.

Report violations
The Authority appealed to the public to contact it and report any violations observed in any food establishment or when there is any doubt about the contents of a food item by calling the Abu Dhabi Government toll-free number 800555 so that the Authority’s inspectors can take the necessary action to achieve safe and sound food for all members of society in the emirate of Abu Dhabi.

The Authority recently issued a decision to close one of the facilities in the city of Abu Dhabi, as a result of a confirmed case of poisoning of some people with E. coli bacteria, as this poisoning resulted from eating a meal of white bean salad with meat contaminated with E. coli bacteria.

Another facility was closed as a result of the repetition of high-risk items and the facility’s failure to adhere to implementing food safety requirements, which affects the level of food safety and consumer health without the establishment taking effective corrective measures, as expired food items were monitored, and some foods did not have a nutritional label, in addition to storing food items outside the facility in another unlicensed store.

Insects in sink

The Authority closed another restaurant due to monitoring the presence of insects in the sink and in the storage area of utensils and equipment used in preparing and preparing food, in addition to not keeping ready-to-serve food at the appropriate temperatures, and inefficient refrigerator cooling in the facility.

A restaurant was closed in Abu Dhabi, as a result of a number of poisoning cases being confirmed as a result of those infected eating a grilled chicken meal contaminated with salmonella bacteria, due to failure to follow the correct practices in handling and preparing food, and another restaurant was closed as a result of selling and preparing non-halal food in the facility without obtaining the necessary permits, storing and preparing it. With the same equipment and tools used to prepare halal food.

The Authority explained that the administrative closure decisions issued will continue as long as their reasons are found, as the facility can be allowed to practice the activity again after its conditions are corrected and it meets all the requirements necessary to practice the activity. It must also replace the equipment used in preparing food, and clean and sterilise the entire facility before reopening it to the public.

The Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority confirmed that the closure decisions and the detection of the observed violations come within the framework of inspection efforts aimed at strengthening the food safety system in the emirate of Abu Dhabi, and confirming the supervisory role to ensure that all establishments adhere to food safety requirements.