Mr Andrew Tan Chye Hee (Time to work on cleanliness, hygiene standards of hawker centres, Dec 18) and Mr Paul Chan Poh Hoi (Three predicaments faced by the hawker trade, Dec 18) shared their concerns on the state of hygiene at hawker centres, and worried about how to attract tourists to patronise our food centres should the present situation remain unchanged.
Before the pandemic, tourists were usually brought by guides to selected hawker centres such as the Newton, Chinatown Complex and Maxwell food centres.
Having said that, good hygiene standards must be observed regardless of whether a hawker centre is located at a tourist spot or in the heartland.
I believe Maxwell Food Centre, which I visit weekly, is the cleanest hawker centre in Singapore. The cleanliness of its entire premises, including its washrooms, is highly laudable.
The tables and seats at the food centre are cleaned once a diner finishes his food and leaves the table; the cleaner immediately moves in to clear and sanitise the tables and seats. Cleaners are deployed to take charge of each section. Its washrooms are washed round the clock.
Despite not being a new hawker centre, Maxwell Food Centre is a good example for other hawker centres to follow.
Also, people tend to concentrate on the unhygienic conditions that are apparent, such as leftover food, used tissues and dirty crockery left all over the tables, but what about hawkers' personal hygiene and cleanliness of food handling, which are less visible?
I frequently see stallholders using their bare hands to operate their phones, scratch their bodies or wipe away sweat, then proceed to prepare food for customers without first washing their hands.
Priscilla Poh Beng Hoon