Raghu Ram Bista, joint secretary at agriculture ministry, attaches a sticker at a hotel in Dhulikhel on Saturday.
BANEPA, March 12: The Department of Food Technology and Quality Control has distributed stickers and certificates on the basis of food quality, for the first time, to hotels and resorts in Dhulikhel.
Immediately after establishment of the food division office in Kavre, Regional Hotel Association Nepal and Dhulikhel Chamber of Commerce and Industry began initiative for food quality improvement. Eighteen hotels and restaurants in the districts were evaluated in the first phase, based on the 50 indicators of food hygiene listed by the department according to the Directives for Standardization of Hotels and Restaurants 2074 BS.
Division Chief Shiva Prasad Bhandari informed that the evaluation put the hotels and resorts into four categories: excellent, good, satisfactory, and average. Those marked as excellent, good, and satisfactory were awarded green stickers with logos, while those marked average were given yellow stickers.
Raghu Ram Bista, joint secretary at the Agriculture Ministry, went to the hotels to hand out the stickers along with certificates.
Dwarika’s Shangri-la Village Resort was marked excellent and given three-star logos. Dhulikhel Lodge Resort, Hotel Mount Princess, and Hotel Arniko received two-star logos. Likewise, Himalaya Horizon, Dhulikhel Village Resort, Gaia Holiday Home, Dhulikhel Boutique Hotel, Sojourn Himalaya Resort, Mirabel Hotel Resort, and Dhulikhel Adventure Resort received one-star logos.
Sanjeev Kumar Karna, director general of the department, said: “Now, customers can eat and rest assured about the quality of food as per the evaluation made by our team.”
Hotels and resorts can also apply for a reevaluation in the future. “As this was the first evaluation of its kind, many were unknown to all 50 indicators,” Karna said. The directive has also made provisions for self-audit.
Mayor of Dhulikhel Municipality Ashok Byanju said that the municipality would provide full assistance in ensuring food hygiene in hotels, restaurants, lodges, and canteens. “The municipality will help in the operation of local food hygiene group,” Byanju said. He said being able to provide hygienic food to locals and tourists would help further strengthen their objective to build Dhulikhel into a tourist hub.
According to Byanju, following the first municipal council’s decision to create a master plan to develop Dhulikhel into a tourist destination by creating a suitable environment for investment, investors have been increasingly attracted toward high-end hotels, resorts, and restaurants in the area.
Targeting Visit Nepal Year 2020, Omstone Asia Capital Nepal Pvt Ltd is establishing Dusit Thani Himalayan Resort and Spa. A sewage treatment plant has developed to manage the waste produced by the resort.
The division also conducted a two-day training session to inform restaurants and government canteens about food hygiene and cleanliness.