A processing factory of a well-known coffee brand in Butterworth has run into trouble after checks by authorities found rat droppings nearby the coffee bean-making section at its premise, yesterday
A team from North Seberang Perai district health department, Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry and Penang Islamic Religious Department, following a tip-off, raided the coffee factory in a joint operation on Thursday, 17 January.
According to NST Online, the situation at the coffee factory was "disgusting".
The authorities said that they had a tough time determining if the rat droppings had been mixed with the coffee beans at the factory
"It was so gross because the rat droppings and the coffee beans look almost the same and they were found near the coffee bean processing area.
"We had a tough time to determine if the droppings had mixed with the beans, but they are found near the wall," NST Online quoted a source as saying.
The coffee company, which had been operating the factory for the last 69 years, has been ordered to close the factory for 14 days
Seberang Perai Utara District Health Office senior assistant health officer (environment), Mohamad Amin Ahmad Zubir was quoted by Malay Mail saying that the factory was ordered closed for 14 days and was only allowed to perform cleaning work.
"The closure notice today was under Section 11 of the Food Act 1983 whereby the premises flouted the food safety regulation and was directed to shut down for 14 days starting today. If any processing work is found, they can be charged in court."
However, the factory would be able to operate again after it applies for a re-inspection by the health office in two weeks time to see if it succeeded in complying with the cleanliness standards
Meanwhile, Malay Mail also reported that the Certificate of Responsibility on Food Safety (MeSTI) obtained by the factory has been suspended for three months, other than the halal status it received, until it was approved to resume operation.
Over the weekend, a Facebook user from Kota Kinabalu took to his account to share how a rat attacked him multiple times while he was watching a two-hour movie at Growball Cinemax in the city: