Jordan shuts down 11 restaurants following new wave of food poisoning

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Authorities in Jordan have shut down 11 restaurants following a new wave of food poisoning that resulted in the hospitalization of 30 individuals in the Balqa Governorate, north of the capital Amman, the official Jordan News Agency reported on Sunday.

The latest news comes a few days after a five-year-old boy died and 700 individuals were hospitalized with food poisoning after eating shawarma at a restaurant in the same area.

The victims reportedly fell ill on Saturday after consuming fast food meals in one of the restaurants in the Balqa refugee camp, the governorate’s Health Affairs Director Dr. Wael al-Azeb said, according to news agency.

He also said all patients who were admitted to the hospital are in good to moderate condition.

A team of experts have taken samples to determine the source of the new wave of food poisoning, the General Director of the Food and Drug Administration Dr. Nizar Mhaidat said, according to the news agency.

A video has surfaced online of an alleged raid on a warehouse that distributes food products to the Ain al-Basha area where the food poisoning outbreak occurred. Authorities reportedly destroyed 80 tons of spoiled chicken during the raid, according to Al Arabiya sources.

Meanwhile, 55 individuals remain hospitalized as a result of last week’s food poisoning incident, but all are in stable condition, according to al-Azeb.

 

Investigations last week revealed that the meat and chicken shawarma had been prepared without using a refrigeration unit in an “unhealthy environment and without adhering to the health requirements and the minimum levels of general safety,” the official Jordan News Agency reported citing a ministry press release.

Laboratory tests also found bacteria in meat and poultry products at the restaurant, according to the ministry’s statement.

The restaurant was immediately shut down following investigations and the restaurant owner is in police custody, AFP reported citing local media.

Following the incident, the health ministry urged people to avoid eating exposed food and to stay away from gatherings, and to avoid going out during hot afternoon hours.

 

 

Al Arabiya English

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