Food poisoning found in tour hotels' meals

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The Independent Online
(First Edition)

MORE THAN half the samples of meals from foreign hotels used by leading British tour operators were heavily contaminated by bacteria such as listeria and salmonella, according to a survey by Holiday Which? published today, writes David Nicholson-Lord.

Thirty-three of the 60 samples, taken from hotels in Gran Canaria, the Algarve in Portugal, and Turkey, were contaminated, the magazine said.

Food from two hotels at Playa del Ingles, Gran Canaria, contained listeria monocytogenes, which can can cause miscarriages, and a slice of chocolate gateau from a hotel in the Algarve contained salmonella enteritidis, which causes vomiting and diarrhoea. Inspectors also found cockroaches and flies.

Among the tour operators using the 60 hotels inspected are Airtours, Thomson, Falcon, Cosmos, Martin Rooks and Enterprise. The magazine, published by the Consumers' Association, said that even 'superficial' checks would have uncovered many of the food handling problems responsible and found it 'deplorable' that no action had been taken.