The BBC’s Watchdog programme has found faecal coliform bacteria in the ice of three of the UK’s largest coffee chains, when they were randomly tested in Wales.
The samples of this bacteria were found in drinks from 30 branches of Starbucks, Costa and Caffé Nero. This has forced the Welsh Food Microbiological Forum (WFMF) to order checks in response to these findings and as a result, 164 samples were taken from both independent and chain coffee cafes.
The chairman of the forum, Paul Ellis, has said that the business who did not pass the test were visited by food safety officers and the unhygienic issues have been addressed. However, the forum has not released to the public which cafes have been found to have this bacteria.
The chairman has said that the “issues identifies as contributing to poor results were mainly related to inadequate cleaning and maintenance procedures of the ice machine, personal hygiene practices and inadequate storage of ice scoops.” The WFMF advocates that further studies will commence to ensure that hygiene is being reinforced.
The next time you think about ordering an iced coffee, think again. Instead opt for a plain black coffee, to ensure you don’t get that added extra ingredient of faecal bacteria.