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Thursday, September 23, 2021

Two Barwa Village eateries closed by Qatar food inspectors

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All photographs via Ministry of Municipality and Environment

Rotten fruit and vegetables, expired food, moldy chopping boards and dirty floors prompted health inspectors to close two eateries in Barwa Village this week.

Chinese restaurant Beijing House has been shut for 30 days for selling food unfit for human consumption, according to the notification by the Ministry of Municipality and Environment (MME).

It was closed on Aug. 15 following a spot-check by inspectors.

Photos published on Baladiya’s website show moldy food, frozen meat and seafood that was past its use-by date and chickens only partly wrapped in plastic bags and stored in a chiller.

A Beijing House representative confirmed to Doha News that it had been closed as part of a wider inspection of eateries at Barwa Village in the last week.

Insects

Meanwhile, neighboring restaurant Lime Tree also fell foul of inspectors, who ordered it to shut for 15 days for selling food unfit for consumption.

Ministry inspectors visiting the eatery, which sells Chinese and Indian food, found chopping boards ingrained with black mold, filthy floors and storage areas and plastic containers with live insects crawling about them, according to their photographs.

Lime Tree restaurant, Barwa Village
Lime Tree restaurant, Barwa Village

No one from the outlet was available for comment.

Also in the last week, the pastry section of the kitchen at the Kingsgate Hotel in Old Al Ghanim, near Souq Waqif, was ordered to be closed for 30 days after inspectors said food was being prepared in unhygienic conditions.

A hotel official told Doha News that it was collaborating with the ministry to rectify the issues raised.

He added that the restaurant remained fully open, although bread and pastry products are being brought in from external suppliers during the closure.

Name and shame

Qatar’s food inspectors have so far censured at least 10 eateries this month for failing to comply with the country’s laws.

This includes partial closures of a number of high-profile hotels across town for expired food.

In the first half of 2016, Baladiya officials shut down 92 outlets and imposed fines of more than QR1.3 million on establishments that flouted the food law.

Baladiya inspectors have the power to undertake unannounced checks on all establishments that prepare, store and sell food products across the country.

Photo for illustrative purposes only.
Photo for illustrative purposes only.

The MME can fine and/or order their closure for up to two months if they don’t meet minimum requirements.

Since 2014, the MME has listed details of the violations in Arabic on its website.

It publishes the venue’s name, location, reason for closure, length of closure and often photographs of what inspectors found during their visit.

Do you frequent these eateries? Thoughts?

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