The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) made 9 Closure Orders, 2 Improvement Orders and 1 Prohibition Order on food businesses for breaches of food safety legislation last month.
Some of the reasons for the Enforcement Orders in December include a dead rodent found trapped underneath a sink, raw sewage flowing through the back yard and at the rear door and a dead mouse on the floor behind the chest freezer.
A medical ward in a hospital had to be closed last month after rat droppings and a dead rodent were found in a kitchen.
The Food Safety Authority said a closure order was served on the kitchen in a Male Medical Ward in Our Lady's Hospital in Navan in Co. Meath.
In other food premises, food safety officers found mice activity in the wash-up area of a kitchen, evidence of a gnawed bag of chips, blood-stained rubber gloves placed in a wash hand basin and raw meat being prepared in the designated vegetable preparation area which was contaminated with chicken juices.
The FSAI said 109 Enforcement Orders were served on food businesses for breaches in food safety legislation in 2018, increasing by 58% in 2017 which saw 69 breaches.
Between January 1, 2018, and December 31, 2018, food inspectors served 95 Closure Orders, 5 Improvement Orders and 9 Prohibition Orders on food businesses throughout the country.
Dr Pamela Byrne, Chief Executive of the FSAI, said that the increase in Enforcement Orders in 2018 was unacceptable.
Dr Byrne said: “There are absolutely no excuses for negligent food practices. The types of reasons cited for Enforcement Orders are simple errors that should not be happening in any food business.
"Enforcement Orders are served on food businesses only when a serious risk to consumer health has been established or where there are a number of ongoing serious breaches of food legislation.
"Non-compliance by food businesses will not be tolerated and all breaches of food safety legislation will be dealt with the full extent of the law.”