A supermarket in Dunedin, New Zealand, known as Dunedin South Countdown, is set to close its doors for two days due to a rat problem.
Despite previous efforts by the supermarket’s management and pest control teams to get rid of the rats, recent findings have shown that the issue persists.
Jason Stockill, a director at Woolworths, the company that owns the supermarket, shared that they’ve been trying to solve this rodent problem for the last couple of months with the help of the Ministry for Primary Industries’ NZ Food Safety division and their pest control partner, Rentokil. They thought they had fixed the problem when no rats were detected since January 28. However, the capture of four rodents in recent days has highlighted that more action is needed.
To thoroughly address this, the supermarket will undergo a 48-hour closure to allow for extensive pest control measures throughout the entire store. This decision was made to ensure the safety and health of their customers and to maintain high food safety standards.
Vincent Arbuckle, from New Zealand Food Safety, stated that during the closure, the store would undergo a deep cleaning and the implementation of additional strategies to get rid of the rats. They will also have a food compliance officer on-site to oversee the process and ensure that all necessary steps are taken to resolve the issue.
The need for such drastic measures came to light after the local newspaper, the Otago Daily Times, published a photograph showing a rat in the store’s deli section, leading to public complaints and concerns. The store aims to reopen on Monday morning, provided that all new pest control efforts are successful and the health and safety of the community can be assured.