Koufu stall vendor accuses diner of putting cockroach into Pontian Wanton Noodles, SFA investigating

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Would you put a cockroach into your own food?

That probably sounds ludicrous, but it was apparently what a stall vendor accused a diner of doing after the latter found a cockroach in her wanton noodles.

Facebook user Jeffrey Linus Lee said his parents had visited Koufu food court at HDB Hub in Toa Payoh last Wednesday (Apr 26), at 8.39pm.

His mother ordered from the Pontian Wanton Noodles stall, but was unable to finish her food and passed some to her husband.

Lee, whose friend alerted Stomp to the incident, said in his post: "After doing so, she tried to eat a bit and saw a foreign object in her bowl of noodles and checked on it.

"To her surprise, it was a roach. Hence, she went to the stall and told the seller about it.

"The seller guy accused that my mom had put in the roach herself.

"My mum asked why would she put a dead roach in her bowl of noodles?!?"

According to Lee, the stall vendor was shouting and further accused his mother of putting the cockroach in herself so that she could get a refund.

When contacted by Stomp, Lee said the employee eventually gave his mother a refund, but taunted her by saying, "Wah, eat until so little then ask me to refund."

Lee explained: "My mum always eats a small portion of food so that bowl of noodles was shared with my dad.

"From the photo in my post, you can see that the cockroach looks cooked too."

Lee said he is concerned over the stall's hygiene and how the staff reacted.

He added: "The guy was saying that my mum intentionally put a cockroach in her food and then went to look for him. Who would be out of their mind to bring a cockroach around? This is not acceptable to me.

"If the staff had apologised and looked into it, we would have been perfectly fine with it. We also understand that sometimes it is difficult to control pests.

"We have relatives who are hawkers too and if something like this happens, the first thing to do would be to apologise without questioning, then maybe offer a new bowl of food and give a refund right away. But this staff was not apologetic at all and he was sooo rude.

"There are lots of old folks hanging around in HDB Hub and if they get food poisoning, it would not be a small problem and they might even land in hospital or worse."

Asked how his mother is after the incident, Lee told Stomp: "She is still okay, just that she had a bit of an upset stomach. However, she has been saying she will not be going out to eat or dabao food from outside after what happened."

Lee has reported the matter to the Singapore Food Agency, Koufu and Pontian Wanton Noodles.

In response to a Stomp query, SFA said it is investigating the incident and added: "Members of the public who come across such incidents should report to SFA via the online feedback form."

A spokesman for Pontian Wanton Noodles told Stomp it is aware of the incident.

"We do arrange for pest control and quality checks on a regular basis to ensure food quality and safety," added the spokesman.

"We are constantly improving our service quality to provide better service for all our customers. We are handling this matter and have already contacted this customer via Facebook and are waiting for his reply."

When asked if any action will be taken against the staff member in question, the spokesman said: "We have educated the workers about proper manners on service and will keep improving our service quality to provide better service for all our customers."

Koufu did not reply to queries by press time.

Lee said: "Koufu informed me that they have called for pest control, and 'out of goodwill, they are giving me a $20 voucher', which I am not going to accept. It is not out of goodwill.

"Pontian has been trying to add me on Facebook as friends etc. Why should I add them when they can contact me like what Stomp did and I can reply them?"