Auckland Council’s latest inspection report has exposed 43 restaurants across the region for serious breaches in cleanliness and food safety standards. From cockroach infestations to filthy kitchens, the findings have raised concerns among customers and officials alike.
The report, covering the period from September 2023 to January 2024, highlights a range of violations including poor cleaning practices, inadequate food safety preparation, hygiene, and storage issues, as well as pest infestations. Two establishments were even forced to temporarily close after receiving E grades, signifying critical risks to public health.
Central Auckland topped the list with 13 D grade restaurants, followed closely by south Auckland with 12. East Auckland had seven, while the west and north each had five and four respectively.
Among the named offenders were well-known establishments like Glen Innes Bakery and Cafe, Vanilla Plant Based Kitchen in Howick, and Gangnam Style Korean BBQ in Takapuna, all found to have pests on their premises.
Despite the alarming findings, there is some relief as 35 out of the 41 restaurants issued with D grades managed to rectify their breaches and regain A grades.
South Auckland councillor Alf Filipaina emphasized the importance of cleanliness, stating that customers deserve better and that eating at clean establishments should be the minimum expectation. He underscored the responsibility of shop owners to maintain clean premises, particularly in areas where food is prepared and served.
While food safety breaches do not result in fines, the council incurs costs for reinspection visits to ensure compliance. The average cost for reinspection was $1400 for E grades and up to $771 for D grades.
The revelation of Auckland’s filthiest restaurants serves as a wake-up call for both food operators and consumers, highlighting the critical need for stringent adherence to hygiene and safety standards in the food industry.