NEA suspends buffet restaurant after rat carcass was found in dish

SINGAPORE - The National Environment Agency (NEA) is investigating a Chinese buffet restaurant at Marina Square after pictures of a rat in one of its dishes surfaced online.

While it conducts its inspections, the restaurant, Hot Pot Culture, is suspended by the authority, reported The Straits Times (ST).

Earlier today, a customer Caron Chan, who was having lunch at restaurant, spotted a rat carcass floating in a dish of salted vegetables. The customer and her group of friends were there to have the porridge buffet.

Ms Chan uploaded pictures of her horrific find on Facebook and it drew dozens of comments.

After spotting the dead rat in the dish, she alerted the restaurant staff who replaced the tray.

"The staff looked shocked after seeing the rat," Ms Chan told Stomp. "I am not sure if manager was aware of what happened at that time," she added.

The buffet resumed after the dish was replaced.

According to Ms Chan, some customers of the restaurant had consumed the vegetables even before she spotted it.

Ms Chan also said there was a commotion between some customers and the restaurant's staff.

"The staff should have stopped the buffet line," said Ms Chan.

While Ms Chan and her friends did not end up paying for their meal, others still had to even when they refused to after learning about the rat in dish.

Ms Chan said that she reported the restaurant to NEA, and NEA officers were down on the scene by the evening.

When ST contacted Hot Pot Culture, the supervisor denied the incident and said it was a mistake of a customer.

"They made a mistake. It's just vegetables that looked like something else. There was no rat body," the supervisor told ST in Mandarin.

The supervisor refused to comment further on the incident.