Viral video of Ohio restaurant raises concerns over food safety

Alonzo Osche

After a video showing concerning images garnered hundreds of social media shares, Mi Hacienda caught the attention of the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department.

TOLEDO, Ohio — A south Toledo restaurant has just days to act on health code violations after a concerning video caught the attention of the local health department.

Mi Hacienda restaurant remains open for business but the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department has given the business less than a week to clean up its act and its basement.

“Food safety is extremely important any place that you go,” Toledo-Lucas Co. Health Commissioner Eric Zgodzinski said.

Video shows several concerning images from meat left uncovered to roaches on the wall and spills on the floor. It was posted Friday by a former employee named Leticia Salaiz and had more than 900 shares on Facebook as of Monday night.

PSA: This is the basement at Mi Hacienda on glanzman . They’re infested with roaches and the meat is just left sitting…

Posted by Leticia Salaiz on Friday, June 25, 2021

“About two days before I quit, I had gone to the basement to help my boss refill the pop machines,” Salaiz told WTOL 11. “While I was down there, I wasn’t down there for five minutes and I saw like six roaches, I counted. And I think that’s when I decided I was done with this place. I didn’t want to be there anymore. It’s gross.”

Since August 2018 the health department has done standard inspections at Mi Hacienda six times. The most recent was in November.

Investigators found three critical violations concerning improperly marked and discarded foods and an issue with pests.

After seeing Salaiz’s video inspectors visited the restaurant Monday morning. Zgodzinski said there were some roof leaks and other hygiene practices that needed to be addressed this week but Mi Hacienda can remain open for business in the meantime.

“It’s one of those things where you need to make sure that they can operate at a safe level,” Zgodzinski said. “We’ll be going back there within the next couple days to see how they’re doing and then we’ll make a determination at that point in time what we need to do further.”

But for Salaiz, her mind is made up. She said she doesn’t want to see customers get sick.

“I hope they shut it down, to be honest. She (the owner) doesn’t have any business owning a restaurant,” Salaiz said.

WTOL 11 reached out to Mi Hacienda twice for a response to this story but did not immediately hear back.

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