Inspector trashes Antiguan students’ food display in Barbados

The day marked the “cultural food day” event for the Antigua & Barbuda Student Association’s (ABSA) week of activities at the university.

The students had a designated booth of local delicacies – ducana and salt fish, pepperpot, seasoned rice, Johnny cakes, etc – ready to be sampled and purchased by fellow students and staff.

This was not to be, however, as a female health inspector halted proceedings by drenching the food with bleach.

The incident reportedly took place around 12:30 pm, on the campus’ Guild Lawn — the designated area for all club and association events.

According to accounts from a number of Antiguan students who were on the scene, the health inspector noted that the seasoned rice didn’t meet temperature regulations (140 degrees Fahrenheit), and then barred the students from selling the item.

Asked by the students if they could be given more time for the food to be heated some more (it was at 91 degrees Fahrenheit), she reportedly disallowed this.

Her colleague, however, reportedly allowed the Belizean student group – also displaying its cultural food at the same time – an extra 10 minutes to heat their food to meet the standard, which it eventually did.

The inspector is also reported to have said, “This (food) is now the property of the Ministry of Health,” and that the students could not relocate or take home the food they spent hours – and close to $800 Barbadian dollars (around EC $1,000) – preparing.

After a minor argument ensued, the inspector left briefly, only to return with bleach and drenched all but a handful of the food items on hand.

This left the Antiguan students – and fellow onlookers – in disbelief.

A meeting was immediately called between the inspector, ABSA executive members, the Office of Student Services, and members of the Guild/student government.

The inspector is reported to have said that the students should have known the regulations and prepared accordingly, as these rules are made available to all students.

However, even the guild vice president – who was also in the meeting – was reportedly unaware of these regulations.

Asked by students why she had ruined not only the seasoned rice in question, but other food items that she had no issue with (such as the pepperpot), the health inspector reportedly refused to answer.

A further meeting has been scheduled for Friday, to discuss whether or not the student association will be compensated for its losses.


Leave a Reply

error: Content is protected !!