July 23, 2024

Year End Wrap Up of Gross Food News: The Neews in 2014

It’s the last Sunday of the month and the last Sunday of the year, so it’s time for a special year-end edition of The Neews,  our monthly feature of food stories that put the eew in news. Here are some highlights:

In February, we shared the story of police in Anambra, Nigeria who shut down a hotel restaurant that had been serving human flesh, according to story in The Independent. Police, who discovered two bloodsoaked human heads wrapped in cellophane, two AK-47s, other weapons and a cache of cell phones at the restaurant, arrested the owner and 10 other people.

Also in February, Steve Melendez shared his Ratopia Restaurant Map in Gothamist.  Using information from New York City’s health department, Melendez created a color-coded map that shows by zip code the percentage of restaurants with a rodent problem in the city.

In April, workers at a cheese factory in Omsk, Russia celebrated a colleague’s New Year’s Eve birthday by taking off most of their clothes and hopping into a tub of warm raw milk used to make string cheese. Groups of four and five men frolicked bare-chested in the milk, snapping photos of themselves. In one picture, a man holds up his wet shorts while friends smile.

In May, there was the story of a meat counter worker at the Whole Foods store in Noe Valley, California who spotted 40 maggots in meat case when he arrived at about 2 pm, but said the problem wasn’t addressed until after the store closed that night.

In June, notes from a health inspection at the China Pearl restaurant in St Petersburg, Fla. made Neews headlines when sewage coming up through the floor drains was one of the 53 food safety violations they found. Other violations included: employees not washing their hands and touching ready-to-eat foods when not wearing gloves, a stench wafting from the restroom, temperature violations, food in the handwashing sink, uncovered bins of food on the floor, and more than 300 rodent droppings

In July, we told you about the Shawshank Redemption moment inmates at the Parnall Correctional Facility in Jackson, MI experienced when they found live maggots in their food. Twice in one week.

And, in November, there was the story, courtesy of ESPN, about the nasty conditions in the vending areas Kansas City’s Kauffman and Arrowhead stadiums.  Health inspectors arrived at Arrowhead one day after a game was played and no events were scheduled to find food and garbage still at the concessions. One inspector said it looked like when the game ended, they just shut the lights off and went home without cleaning up.

In all, there were food safety violations at 20 of the 26 concession stands. Thirty seven of the violations were critical.

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