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Sunday, February 28, 2021

Quality Hypermarket partly closed over ‘unsanitary conditions’

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Quality Hypermarket
Quality Hypermarket

With translation from Heba Fahmy

Qatar’s Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning (MMUP) has temporarily closed the grocery section of a popular hypermarket on Salwa Road for five days.

On its Facebook page, the MMUP said that Quality Hypermarket’s food section was shut for “preparing and trading in food items under unsanitary conditions.”

Photos posted by the MMUP showed that inspectors cordoned off several areas of the store, including the bakery, dairy and meat/fish sections.

The hypermarket’s upstairs area, which contains electronics and other home accessories, remains open to the public.

Reaction

The closure appears to have caught many Qatar residents off-guard, and comes ahead of a busy shopping season as Ramadan starts next week.

Quality Hypermarket
Quality Hypermarket

From the outside, the hypermarket looks operational, but shoppers looking to buy foodstuff were barred entry by several large white screens and banners.

During a visit to the store this morning, Doha News observed several shoppers stopping to read the signs affixed to the screens that said, “(the) supermarket will reopen within (a) few days, sorry for the inconvenience.”

Some asked a nearby security guard and staffers at the customer service booth for clarification, but were told only that the supermarket was closed and would reopen shortly.

Employees declined to comment on the closure to Doha News.

The hypermarket is expected to completely reopen on Tuesday, June 16.

Thoughts?

52 COMMENTS

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expat viewer
expat viewer
5 years ago

Hoping Quality Hypermarket will re-open again in time for the Ramadan season

MIMH
MIMH
5 years ago
Reply to  expat viewer

So everyone’s gets sick? How mean of you

expat viewer
expat viewer
5 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

No offense to you MIMH, what i am saying is that once they fix their problems, comply with prescribed sanitary regulations and improve their services, i am hoping they can serve their customers again.. 🙂

THE DooD
THE DooD
5 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

since they got a warning and closed , the next time they open they will be extra careful . so i guess it would be the best place to shop :D.

MIMH
MIMH
5 years ago
Reply to  THE DooD

That’s probably true!

MIMH
MIMH
5 years ago

Will they be forced to change their name to “Suspect Quality Supermarket”?

Anonymouse
Anonymouse
5 years ago

Good work and am glad that the store was named rather than the old ‘a large and well known store on D ring road..’ What continues to baffle me is how some rules and regulations can be so efficiently enforced and others can’t. Why can’t we get the folks who head Baladiya to run some other departments, hmmmm?

Rane de Beer
Rane de Beer
5 years ago

Didn’t realise things were so bad! I shop there every week, but thought the food, especially fish, section looked and smelt very suspicious when I was there on Wednesday. tx for the info

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago
Reply to  Rane de Beer

Sir,
We take your comments very seriously and we are already working on things which need improvement. We will not let you down again.

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Strange u found doha news to give clarification. Even when I pass ur area some bad smell comes. Nice tactics u got to get back the trust of the customers

Rane de Beer
Rane de Beer
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Tx, Aboonavas. I see you are the general manager there – wish other companies/government officials would also communicate like you do. The shop still has my support, also because you hosted this good thing: http://www.gulf-times.com/culture/238/details/442472/charity-concert-for-nepal%E2%80%99s-earthquake-survivors

Joe
Joe
5 years ago
Reply to  Rane de Beer

Smelled fishy, I presume!

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago

I work in Quality. The shop was closed for violating the municipality regulation for sure. But it was not for unsanitary food handling.
It was because few newly arrived staff in the food department was on their on job training before completing their health certificate.
The picture of fish in the box is the Sardine fish while serving and cutting.

A_qtr
A_qtr
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Too bad what’s hygienic and what’s not is subjective depending on where one is from

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago

I am sure the store will improve itself and reopen and work hard to meet customers expectations

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago

On behalf of Quality I duly apologise for letting our customers down. I promise, we will strongly come back to exceed our customers expectations.

Simon
Simon
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Well done to you, Aboonavas, for coming on here and communicating – that’s more than many companies do.

Simon
Simon
5 years ago

Parking on back side (!)

Daniel Schriefer
Daniel Schriefer
5 years ago

The same old story again.

johnny wang
johnny wang
5 years ago

Quality supermarket, nice fancy name but its so sad that they don’t train their staff in safe, healthy and sanitary working practices and neither do they pay them well to encourage them to perform well

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago
Reply to  johnny wang

Dear Sir,
We promise you that we will give sufficient training to all our staff to perform at the highest standards. This is an area we need improvement for sure.

Please note that in value retail industry, for the year 2015, our salary packages are next to France based international retail chain in Qatar. None of the other value retail competitors of ours pay better package at present and we are proud about it.

You would be also interested to know that all the staff(not just supervisors) get additional incentive if they meet their department targets which is very rare in value large format hypermarkets.

If we keep aside our newly opened outlets of Quality Mall – Al Mamoura and Quality Hypermarket – Bin Mahmoud, 65% of our staff are with us from the beginning from 2010 which shows the dedication and commitment of our staff to the institution.

Quality Hypermarket is part of a family of 22 companies with approximately 3,000 employees in Qatar alone, of 12 different nationalities. You will be glad to know that, we were one of the first Qatari companies to visit Nepal after a series of earth quakes hit the country few months back, to both giving them more jobs and to be part of the relief efforts in a humble way.

I would humbly invite you to our office to understand these facts first hand, if you wish sir.

Jayaraj Efreme
Jayaraj Efreme
5 years ago

This hypermarket deserves it, before they give out dated food to me when I open to eat really got mad , I complaint them via phone… but now… someone give good lesson to them….

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago

Dear All,
We are absolutely saddened at the one sided and partial view of this article. As a responsible media, Doha News should have taken our comments as we were fully available to comment at all times.

Yes, it’s true that Quality Hypermarket is partially closed by the authorities for violating the law. But that’s not for failing to keep a healthy and sanitary condition in the show room. It’s for failing the health certificate requirement for the employees as we had trainees in store waiting for their visa to be stamped. We can get their health certificate only after stamping visa. We are rectifying this failure immediately.

But as we all can see from below comments, there are many areas Quality Hypermarket need to improvement in terms of Hygiene, Quality of service and over all shopping experience. We will take your criticism and comments on board and improve ourselves to exceed your expectations.

Approximately 10,000 to 11,500 customers depend on us for their daily needs. These customers have put their trust on us for the past five years. And we will make sure that their trust is justified.

Thank you to all of you for your constructive criticism, comments and feedback. We have reached this far with all your wholehearted support and we are confident to win back your support by achieving higher standards of performance.

MIMH
MIMH
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

So you are saying Doha News is telling lies with its headline? I’m shocked and they should issue an apology if they are wrong

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Dear MIMH,

As I said in the initial comments, we are not here to pretend that everything in Quality Hypermarket is of the highest standards. As clearly evident from the comments, there are many customers who have pointed out areas of improvement for us. And that’s exactly what you are going to see in the days to come so that we live up to our name.

We had scheduled refurbishment / re fit out works for the off season days past Eid Ul Fitr and we are hoping to invite you all to a new Quality Hypermarket – Salwa Road by the time for Eid Ul Adha with a new / much modern store design and shopping experience.

What we need is all your support and guidance. We are one of the major value hypermarkets in Qatar in terms of foot flow just because of you only. And we are here to live up to your expectations.

Smile
Smile
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

kudos to you Aboonavas. You did a fantastic job elaborating on the issue concerning Quality Hypermarket. I like the fact that you accept in public your organisation need improvement in some areas and trying your best to fix all the issues. You don’t pretend.
For me, this is absolutely good Public Relations.

Blue
Blue
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

You should make MIMH your in house quality inspector – he knows everything about everything…..

He is very expensive though – drives a Maserati and flies only business class…..perhaps appoint him as a consultant but then he might tell you what you already know in a pretty PowerPoint……

The best way to get him to work free is to have a post/article on Dohanews

MIMH
MIMH
5 years ago
Reply to  Blue

Lol

Blue
Blue
5 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

He’s only inviting you to a “Grand new opening”…..

……..I already see a conflict of interest.

MIMH
MIMH
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

At least you are taking time to respond to this event, unlike most businesses in Qatar.

Q reader
Q reader
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

It is good that manager of Quality Hypermarket is giving clarification online.

But the company should not hide the reason and the Ministry stickers behind white screens. I am sure the Ministry notices are for public information and it is illegal to not keep them visible. Such smart actions may get them a new fine.

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago
Reply to  Q reader

Ministry stickers never reveal any additional information about the violation what is available in ministry website. As you can see in the above pictures, these are the general stickers which ministry use in any closures or violation. Whether it’s done for one single fairly smaller violation or a major violation.

We are using this closure time for doing all essential maintenance/refurbishment works inside the premises including improving air quality inside the common premises.

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago
Reply to  Q reader

We are operating under Municipality of Al Rayyan and they conduct frequent visits to all food outlets including hypermarkets and impose big fines for even any first instance of small violations. But they have never published or made available any comprehensive Quality manual or guidelines for food establishments to follow and to adhere to.

For example, in the past, We had fines imposed for having traces of mud on elephant yam which is a tuber whose shelf life is better with some mud on it. We had inspectors cutting apples and checking has it gone bad inside and many many others. But this is the law of the Municipality and we are respecting it and working hard to rectify any problems they want us to.

Blue
Blue
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Hmmm very interesting – no published standards in place but they penalize businesses for not following standards….

……perhaps a news article Doha News should take up.

On the other hand, considering you acknowledge shortcomings, respond to allegations – a first I have seen in Dohanews. I have never visited quality before but I’d like to patronize your establishment.

Aussiegirl
Aussiegirl
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

I’m pleased that they come and impose harsh fines for violations. Them closing that whole section of the store seems to indicate that what they found on this visit was not a minor thing as you have stated. It really annoys consumers that there is so much substandard food sold here which needs to be thrown out within a day or two. So yes they should be keeping a close eye on how stores operate as it’s the publics health they are safeguarding.

ShabinaKhatri
ShabinaKhatri
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

To be fair, our reporter tried to speak to management and staff yesterday, and was rudely rebuffed. So it’s not really accurate to say Quality was “fully available to comment at all times.” However, thank you for this clarification.

Aboonavas
Aboonavas
5 years ago
Reply to  ShabinaKhatri

Dear ShabinaKhatri,
Thank you for your clarification. Immediately after seeing your post, I have looked at the video of your reporter inside our show room and her conversation with our security and customer service personnel. It is not true that she was rudely rebuffed, but she didn’t get an immediate response to see a manager. But if your reporter was patient enough, it would have been definitely possible considering the situaton.

We had advertisements running in print, radio, visual and social media for the weekend and there was a record number of people turned out over Thursday and Friday and customer service staff was trying to make them understand the situation. You can imagine the panic. A bit more sensible approach from your reporter might have helped.

As explained in earlier posts, our Salwa road outlet serves 10,000 to 11,500 customers average a day as they have put their trust on us. And in this occasion we failed to upkeep their trust.

As a common man, I can see that Doha News is popular among hundreds of Qatari citizens/residents is primarily because of the trust they have placed in your institution and the news you report. In this particular instance, your reporting have miserably failed to upkeep that trust. The overall understanding someone gets from your report is way too inaccurate. And as a reader you have let us down.

But we do not worry too much about it and as everyone pointed out, we have a big job to do.

Thank you everyone for your patience and God bless us all.

Guest
Guest
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Up Vote.

ShabinaKhatri
ShabinaKhatri
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

I continue to find it unfair that you call our reporting “miserable” when it was Quality that refused to comment to journalists or to customers about what happened. As you said, time was of the essence as people were flocking to the store to shop over the weekend.

The Baladiya already posted its reasons for shutting down the store, and that is what we based our article on. How long did you want DN to wait for a comment? Nobody at the store said one was forthcoming, and Sunday would certainly have been too late.

I’m glad you are reaching out to customers now, but frankly, it’s a bit disingenuous to blame Quality’s problems on our story.

Dumb
Dumb
5 years ago
Reply to  ShabinaKhatri

Shabina point is not wether they answer or not point is why the new guys are allowed inside to handel food stuff without medical report. So many years reading doha news should u guys appoint tech guys how can you miss this point. Kudos to doha municipality.

Yacine
Yacine
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Good to see someone acknowledging their mistakes and apologizing to their customers. I have never been to your shop but I am now looking forward to visiting it.

Smile
Smile
5 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

..seconded.

Simon
Simon
5 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

Good. Be sure to follow the big sign, and park on back side.

Aussiegirl
Aussiegirl
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

You serve 10 000 customers daily? Wow, that is a lot. Anyway I’m sure that they will be able to get their grocery items from another store so it’s not exactly that they depend on you, more that they shop with you.

Dumb
Dumb
5 years ago
Reply to  Aboonavas

Humm how can you allow a person dont have medical card to handel food stuff. What action you have take for the guy who took these new guys to handel food. Blah blah blah. Answer please.

Myrddin
Myrddin
5 years ago

Yet Carrefour store their cakes and pastries in plastic containers which I have now witnessed, more than once, been opened and fingered/slurped, only to be closed and put back on the shelf.

When I collared a manager about this, he could not see a problem. He simply offered an alternative cake. Needless to say I declined.

NEVER, buy cakes form Carrefour.

Myrddin
Myrddin
5 years ago
Reply to  Myrddin

Addendum:

I did suggest to the same manager that perhaps it would be a good idea to place the sticky pricing labels over the join in the box (a la Europe) apparently I was instantly declared ‘crazy’!

Nice one Carrefour, really well done!

SokhnaFan2010
SokhnaFan2010
5 years ago
Reply to  Myrddin

Be comforted in the fact that there are far more germs on the trolliey handles that you collect your shopping with, the credit card touchpads you use to enter your password and on the money the cashier gives you in change!!! As for the cakes, most would agree they are poorly made, heavily creamed and light on flavor, plus adding potential fingerprints and saliva just keeps me movin past!

Myrddin
Myrddin
5 years ago
Reply to  SokhnaFan2010

As a rule – I wash my hands before handling food at home, and wash any handled food too.

It’s somewhat difficult to wash a cake?

I’d simply prefer that I wouldn’t risk the contents of someone’s nostrils (there I’m being very polite) on foodstuff I can never wash?

SokhnaFan2010
SokhnaFan2010
5 years ago
Reply to  Myrddin

The point, I obviously poorly made, was that irrespective of your personal hygiene habits, the potential for public cross contamination is statistically far higher than a highly random and uncommon occurance of a nostril hair or other foreign object in a carrefour cake, washed or unwashed. However, good to know you wash everything. It shouldn’t stop people never buying cakes from Carrefour however.

Joson John
Joson John
5 years ago

“Quality Hypermarket” lacking Quality !!!!

ShabinaKhatri
ShabinaKhatri
5 years ago

Great discussion, all! Closing the thread now.

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