SINGAPORE: Two caterers have had their licences suspended after 39 people fell ill in separate incidents of suspected gastroenteritis.
The incidents happened on Aug 31 and Sep 2, involving Mum's Kitchen Catering and Cherish Delights.
Three people were hospitalised, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) in a joint media release on Wednesday (Sep 11).
Two of them have since been discharged, and the remaining patient is in stable condition.
"In view of the suspected ongoing transmission, SFA has suspended the licences of Mum’s Kitchen Catering Pte Ltd and Cherish Delights Pte Ltd with effect from Sep 10 and Sep 11 respectively until further notice," said the authorities.
Both caterer's kitchens are located in the Shimei East Kitchen industrial complex in Bedok.
Food handlers at the two caterers will be required to re-attend and pass the Basic Food Hygiene Course before they can resume work.
The companies are also required to clean and sanitise the premises, including equipment and utensils.
This is the latest in a series of recent food poisoning incidents involving caterers.
In July, Stamford Catering and Kate’s Catering had their food hygiene grades cut to “C” after 302 people fell ill in separate incidents.
In June, three caterers - Chilli Api Catering, Pro*3 Institutional Catering and Delizio Catering were also downgraded.
In a statement on Thursday, Mum's Kitchen Catering said it took the suspension seriously and will be reviewing its processes.
"We are now investigating into the matter and we have also taken immediate steps to review the whole supply chain process and practices," the statement added.
"We have also requested our external food consultants to audit the entire supply chain and food processes once again."
The company said it "deeply regrets" the inconvenience caused to customers.
"The Singapore Food Authority and the Ministry of Health have also visited our premises and we are co-operating with them to investigate into the cause of the incident," it added. "We are just as anxious to find out the actual cause of the incident."
Reporters has contacted Cherish Delights for comment.