Four filthy food processing factories in Bukit Mertajam ordered closed

Four filthy food processing factories in Bukit Mertajam ordered closed

BUKIT MERTAJAM: The was shocked to find four food processing factories operating in extremely filthy environment in Mengkuang Titi, Sungai Lembu and Tanah Liat, here today.

In the operation by the Penang Health Department (JKN) with Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP) Licensing and Enforcement Department, two factories, one processing kerisik (toasted dessicated coconut) and another producing soya sauce, were ordered closed for 14 days following the discovery of their dirty premises.

In the raid on the factory producing kerisik in Mengkuang Titi, a group of workers believed to be foreigners fled into an oil palm plantation behind the premises leaving the factory machines still running.   

Penang JKN Food Safety and Quality Department health environment officer, Mohd Wazir Khalid said in the operation which began at 10 am, JKN found four factories operating not in accordance to the stipulated cleanliness standard and they were found to be in extremely unhygienic conditions.

“For example at the kerisik factory, the factory floor was dirty, and there were maggots found in containers keeping cooked kerisik. Apart from that, there were dogs loitering around in the premises and we even found dead rats,” he told reporters after the operation.

Mohd Wazir said in inspection at the soya sauce factory, JKN found plastic containers used to keep soya beans had rotted when plastic containers were not allowed for the purpose.

“We found the main offence was the poor overall cleanliness including clogged drains while finished products such as sauce was exposed to foreign substances and insects as they were placed outside the building,” he said.

According to him, JKN and MBSP issued nine compounds for various offences amounting to RM9,000  and the premises owners have to clean their respective factories before being allowed to resume operation.

— BERNAMA