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Poisioning is result of ‘bad prep’

Lab results have revealed that an outbreak of food poisoning that left hundreds hospitalised in Siem Reap province last week was caused by bacteria likely passed on through unhygienic food preparation, an official said yesterday.

Dim Theng, lab director at CamControl, one of the Ministry of Commerce’s departments leading research into food safety, said tests of food samples had revealed that “it was bacteria poisoning, not chemical poisoning” that caused hundreds to fall sick after eating sandwiches at an event organised by Christian NGO World Vision.

Official results, he said, would be released in the coming days.

Theng added that those who prepared the sandwiches should be investigated.

Moeun Srey Oeuy, a representative of the Ponlork Thmey youth group, which prepared the food, insisted yesterday that her team had taken measures to ensure hygiene standards.

“I washed my hands and washed the vegetables using filtered water from the storage tank.”

Channpheaktra Hong, a World Vision spokesman, said the NGO is working to ensure food provided at its events is safe to eat, and will release a food-security policy this week.

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