Azeri Times

Mass shawarma poisoning in Baku

Mass shawarma poisoning in Baku
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17 March 2019 - 19:21

Seven students were poisoned today after eating a popular fast food product in Azerbaijan – shawarma, or döner.

The seven were taken to hospital, and three of them have already been discharged. The condition of the other four is serious but they are not in danger.


Döner, also known as shawarma, is a fast food product of Turkish origin. It is very popular in Azerbaijan, especially among students, due to its cheapness and satiety. It is generally made of roast beef or chicken, put in bread or pita, with fresh vegetables and sauce. 

Seven university students went to eat chicken shawarma together in a small cafe located near the city centre after classes, Qafqazinfo reports.

They all soon ended up in the hospital with signs of food poisoning. Employees of the Food Safety Agency visited the cafe, and were ‘horrified’ by the unclean sanitary conditions there. They took food samples for laboratory examination.

The results of the lab study are not yet available, but experts “suspect” that a poor-quality mayonnaise may be at fault.

Previously, sanitary standards in cafes and restaurants were monitored by the sanitary and epidemiological service.

Since December 2018, the food safety agency, which was created in 2017 specifically to monitor compliance with all food standards, has been responsible for this.

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