JOHOR BARU: All 24-hour mamak restaurant operators in Johor are reminded to allocate at least one and a half hours for cleaning work each day, Johor Indian Muslim Entrepreneurs Association secretary Hussein Ibrahim said.
“They are supposed to clean their premises thoroughly during that period which could start at 2.30am,” he said.
The association represents almost 400 members in Johor.
Hussein claimed that reports of dirty restaurants were rare here these days following stringent enforcement by the authorities.
There had been fewer cases of restaurants being closed over poor hygiene, he said.
“Some of the closures lasted at least a week or more, which badly affected their income. So restaurant operators have learnt their lesson the hard way,” he said in an interview.
Hussein also said that all foreign workers were given proper training before being allowed to prepare and handle the food.
The foreign workers are taught about hygiene standards and laws and regulations set by local authorities, he said.
Meanwhile Health, Environment and Agriculture Committee chairman Dr Sahruddin Jamal said the state Health Department and local authorities had been conducting constant spot checks on eateries across the state.
“We also make sure that all the workers handling food have received typhoid injections. They must also wear aprons and keep their nails short. All these help in reducing the risk of food contamination,” he said.
As it is the fasting month, Dr Sahruddin said the department and local councils were also frequently conducting checks at Ramadan bazaars to ensure the cleanliness of the food stalls.