New findings by the Czech Agriculture and Food Inspection Authority, released to the public this week, have already uncovered numerous food safety violations in Czech restaurants and food stands in the first two months of 2016.
Following a benchmark 2015 when inspectors were forced to close down 144 mass catering operations throughout the Czech Republic for serious crimes against hygiene, news that twenty-four such venues have already been shut down in 2016 isn’t promising.
In 2015 the authority carried out 15,051 inspections; a third of the venues assessed were cited for violations. This year 35 percent of locations inspected have already proven in violation of the health code, a number inspectors see as on par with last year’s findings.
In many cases, infringements were, according to a statement issued by the authority, “Suggestive of utter ignorance of even the most basic duties required under food law.”
The most common reasons for the immediate closure of establishments include deposits of grease, dirt, and food residues on kitchen equipment, dishes, and floors, lack of hot water supply, and pest droppings.
While many of the restaurants cited were outside of Prague, the largest local concentration of restaurants in violation of health codes appears to be in Prague 4.
The food inspection authority has concluded that it will continue to exert stringent controls in an effort to protect the health of consumers.
See here for an up-to-date list (and stomach-turning photos) of health code offenders.
Photos courtesy of Státní zemědělské a potravinářské inspekce.