SINGAPORE - A customer found a live rat at a McDonald's outlet in Ang Mo Kio on Wednesday evening (Sept 12).
In a video posted to Twitter, the rat can be seen moving frantically on a table beside a tray of what appears to be french fries.
Twitter user melissa said in her tweet accompanying the video that the rat had fallen from the ceiling into her food while she was eating.
The video has been viewed over 27,200 times and retweeted more than 1,500 times, as of Thursday at 10.10pm, since it was posted the day before at 9.43pm.
In an e-mail response to The Straits Times, a McDonald's spokesman said that the fast food chain was aware of the incident that took place at its Ang Mo Kio Central restaurant.
It has since engaged an external pest control agency to remove the rat and conduct a thorough inspection of the restaurant, the spokesman added.
"At McDonald's, we recognise high hygiene standards as an integral part of our business and undertake a rigorous cleaning protocol, which includes regular inspections and preventive treatment for pest control," the spokesman said, adding that the latest routine check on Aug 30 detected no irregularities.
"We take all feedback relating to the quality of our restaurants very seriously and will continue to ensure that our restaurants maintain high levels of hygiene for our customers," the spokesman added.
The National Environment Agency (NEA) told The Straits Times on Friday that it was aware of the incident and is investigating.
Last year, the NEA conducted more than 88,000 inspections on food retail establishments, according to its website.
Those found with hygiene lapses, including failure to keep the licensed premises free from pest infestation, can be fined up to $2,000 and issued demerit points.
Once 12 or more points are accumulated in 12 months, the license can be suspended or revoked.
"Ultimately, the key strategy in managing rat infestation is to remove food sources and areas of harbourage," the NEA said on its website. "This includes ensuring that the environment is kept clean, food is stored in rat-proof containers and good refuse management is practised."