F&B / General Business (Singapore) / Industry Lessons

What We Can Learn From Singapore’s Mass Food Poisoning Incident

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Recently, a string of restaurants were hit by a mass food poisoning scandal.

Singapore has to date maintained a reputation for being one of the cleanest countries in the world. And this ‘cleanliness’ extends to the F&B industry, where restaurants are expected to play their part in maintaining a high standard of hygiene.

What are the key lessons and takeaways that restaurants can gain from this? How can other F&B outlets prevent an epidemic? In this article, we take a look at the recent mishaps and address these questions appropriately.

The Food Poisoning Cases

In November, more than 600 people had fallen ill, dozens of which were hospitalized in separate food contamination incidents here in Singapore. In chronological order, these are the cases:

6th Nov: Spize

The first incident saw 81 people fall sick after eating food packed into Bento Boxes prepared by Spize restaurant. One man, a Mr. Fadli Salleh, 38, died in hospital a week later. Salmonella was the identified cause behind the incident. The restaurant was forced to shut down and had its license suspended following the cases.

23rd Nov: TungLok Catering

The catering branch of the TungLok restaurant group was held responsible for 190 people falling sick after consuming food provided at a Singapore Civil Defence Force event. The license for the Max Atria branch was suspended following the reports.

26th Nov: FoodTalks Caterer & Manufacturer

131 Kindgerten 2 pupils and teachers fell ill after eating prepared meals by FoodTalks Caterer & Manufacturer. Operating out of Shimei East Kitchen in Bedok, FoodTalks supplied contaminated packets of fried macaroni to 115 young children and 16 teachers attending a school camp. The company has been under investigation by the NEA following the outbreak.

Dec 6th: Mandarin Orchard

42 people had fallen ill, with 4 of them hospitalised after a food poisoning outbreak at Mandarin Orchard. The incident was said to have occurred during a Sunday lunch banquet at the hotel. Food handlers in the hotel had been temporarily relieved of duties to complete medical tests and receive clearance from authorities.

What Is Being Done Following The Outbreaks?
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