Proposed Cebu City Ordinance Mandates Eating Utensils Sterilizer in Food Shops

Photo by Alina Kovalchuk on Unsplash.

A proposed Cebu City ordinance is seeking to require all food establishments in the city to provide sterilizers for eating utensils as part of the government’s anti-COVID-19 measures.

The proposed ordinance, authored by Councilor Nestor Archival, also seeks to impose a fine of P1,000 for the first offense, P3,000 for the second offense, and P5,000 for the third offense.

For the fourth and succeeding offense, a fine of P5,000 and revocation of business permit will be imposed. The ordinance, when approved, will cover all dining establishments in Cebu City, registered or not, regardless of the dining capacity, number of crew, kind of food they serve, and whether the same offers self-service dining or not. 

These establishments shall, within the eating place, provide or install a dining utensils sterilizer or heater where food utensils are sterilized or sanitized first before handling or letting the customers use the same.

“Sanitation in these establishments especially in the eating utensils is vital to our goal to suppress if not completely eliminate COVID-19 in our City especially nowadays that we are slowly embracing the effects of the new normal,” the proposed ordinance states. 

The Cebu City Council’s Committee on Laws, Ordinances, and Styling has interposed no objection for the approval of the said proposed ordinance, saying the proposed ordinance falls within the ambit of the General Welfare clause and is well within the authority of the Sanggunian to enact. 

“This Committee is mindful of the fact that the ongoing pandemic has ushered in a new normal where society is tasked to revisit current health and sanitation protocols to improve them in the hopes of finally putting an end to the spread of COVID-19,” it said.

Even if the provision for heaters and/or sterilizers would have little to no impact in COVID-19 prevention, at the very least, it may also help prevent other communicable diseases and foodborne illnesses; ultimately promoting the general health and welfare of the City’s inhabitants, the committee added. –

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