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Up To 54% Of Ice In Saigon Found To Be Contaminated

From trà đá and cafe sữa đá to bia hơi, ice is an important element of beverage culture in Saigon. But according to a new study by the city’s Department of Food Hygiene and Safety, more than half of ice served in the city is contaminated with harmful bacteria.

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At a conference on ice making and trading on Thursday, the department’s head, Huynh Le Thai Hoa, revealed that 12 of the 22 samples collected at various ice factories around the city failed to meet hygiene standards, reports Vietnam News.

Some of the samples reportedly contained E.coli, in addition to three other strains of bacteria that can lead to diarrhea and respiratory infections.

“Bacteria such as E.coli, coliforms, faecal streptococci and pseudomonas aeruginosa in ice can cause acute diarrhoea, cholera and damage the liver and kidneys,” wrote the news site.

Ice being delivered in Saigon. Photo via Wikicommons.

Of the city’s 193 ice factories, only 79 use tap water while the rest rely on wells for ice production. More than 50% do not test their water quality.

Hoa pledged that his department would correct the problem by surveying all ice factories in Saigon and require them to check their hygiene and safety practices. Those that fail will be shut down.

Looks like I’ll be ordering my 333 without ice for a while…

[Top image via Thanh Nien]

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