Langhams salmonella outbreak followed multiple failed hygiene inspections

28 August, 2015 by
Aoife Boothroyd

Following reports of a salmonella outbreak at Melbourne’s Langham Hotel recently, it has been revealed that the five star venue had failed multiple food safety inspections in 2014.

The fines and orders were issued over poor hygiene in food preparation areas and food safety risks including the presence of cockroaches, vermin and mice.

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“The kitchen almost got shut down a couple of times,” a source familiar with the council’s inspectorate told the Herald Sun.

“… There was an apron which had been lying under a dishwasher, and when they lifted it up it was something out of a movie, where cockroaches scattered everywhere.”

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The Langham’s managing director Ben Singleton, said that “certain issues were identified” in February 2014, all of which were rectified by March 2014.

“Since then, the hotel has been fully compliant and is regularly inspected. At no time was the hotel notified of possible closure,” Singleton told the Herald Sun.

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“We will continue to work diligently and vigilantly with the Department of Health and Human Services to maintain our high and stringent health and hygiene standards.”

Earlier this week it was revealed that six people had been hospitalised, and a further 28 people had fallen ill after attending a high tea service at The Langham.

The service, at the hotel’s Aria Bar and Lounge, took place over the weekend of 11-12 July and

Health department spokesperson, Bram Alexander, said guests can be confident that they’re no longer at risk, with all suspect foods disposed of.

"Both we and [Melbourne City Council] are satisfied things are back to normal and as they should be,” he said.

The outbreak has been linked to the hotel’s Chocolate Bar Afternoon Tea event, which was attended by 66 people.

The hotel has been in contact with guests, and managing director Ben Sington said it’s cooperating with the efforts to determine the source of the outbreak.