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Government will shut eateries without proper hygiene

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Rady Khim dishes out a scoop of red rice behind the counter of her eatery, Happy Dragon Farm, last year. The Ministry of Tourism warns that it will revoke the licences of eateries that cater to tourists if found without a proper hygiene certificate. QUINN LIBSON

Government will shut eateries without proper hygiene

The Ministry of Tourism has warned that it will revoke the licences of eateries that cater to tourists if they are found without a hygiene certificate from the Ministry of Health or provincial health departments.

A directive signed by Minister of Tourism Thong Khon on Friday confirmed the matter. Consequently, the ministry said: “No entity can run a business in the sector with the absence of an operating licence from the Ministry of Tourism.”

The same directive indicated that some tourist establishments are still failing to fulfil their obligations in acquiring an operating licence, let alone a hygiene certificate from the ministry or a provincial health department.

Complying with regulations

Ministry of Tourism spokesman Tith Chantha could not be reached for additional comment on Tuesday.

Preah Sihanouk provincial tourism department director Taing Sochet Kresna said on Tuesday that all major resorts and eateries in his jurisdiction “have complied with the regulations set by the ministry and the provincial tourism department in regard to food safety and hygiene”.

However, he said small businesses haven’t done so as “it is difficult for them”.

“We see that they [business owners] have begun to understand and take part in collective efforts to strengthen food safety,” he said.

Sun Sok Kanha, the general manager of Happiness Water Park Resort located in Battambang province, which focuses mainly on selling Khmer food, said her establishment complies with the law.

She said her resort had obtained the necessary permits from the relevant authorities before operations started.

“Food safety is our top priority. We uphold high standards of hygiene as per instructions from the tourism department,” she said.