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"Dirty Dozen" Supermarkets List Released

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State Senator Jeff Klein released the list of the "Dirty Dozen" supermarkets Sunday.

Klein was in front of one of the stores, an Associated on 14th Street between Seventh and Eighth avenues in Manhattan.

According to the report, rat-eaten holes in sacks of rice, moth-infested popcorn and live cockroaches are just some of the disgusting things that have been found in some city food stores. Klein says the stores have multiple failed inspections.

He says the list proves lawmakers need to adopt the "Three Strikes" law, which would require stores to shut down if they fail three consecutive inspections.

The other stores on the list include Rite Aid on Second Ave at 95th Street and American Fu Zhou Grocery on East Broadway in Manhattan.

On Staten Island, the K-Mart on Hylan Boulevard. In the Bronx, Rodriguez Meat Market on East 184th and African Market on Faile Street. In Brooklyn, Noah Products on Ditmas Avenue, Genesis Deli Grocery on Fulton Street, and 1370 Rockaway Food on Rockaway Parkway. And in Queens, Global Commodities in College Point, King Food Farms in Jackson Heights and Golden Town Supermarket in Corona.

NY1’s Ruschell Boone filed this report.

They are being called the “Dirty Dozen,” 12 of the filthiest food stores in the city. According to a report released by State Senator Jeff Klein, an Associated Supermarket on 14th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues is on the list, and that's not sitting well with some of the store's customers.

Many say they find it hard to believe.

“If that were true it would not be cool and I would recommend that they clean it up quickly,” said one customer. “But this store, I have never had a problem with this store.”

“This must have been a long time ago because this store was fixed before the holiday and now it looks beautiful,” added another. “It was a little bit let go, you know?”

The report, called "Still Enough To Make You Sick," states that the food store failed four sanitary inspections between March 2005 and April 2006, after inspectors discovered rodents and mouse droppings near or on top of the food.

The top 12 includes three each in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens, two in the Bronx and one on Staten Island.

Klein says the Associated is among 159 city food retailers that failed three or more sanitary inspections last year. As a result, he's pushing legislation calling for a three strike law that would allow the city to shut down repeat offenders.

“If a supermarket fail three inspections in a row, you should lose you license to do business - period - as a supermarket,” said Klein.

But the manager of the Associated said the store failed those inspections while it was undergoing renovations. He says the store passed its last two inspections and he has taken steps to make sure it remains clean.

“We have an exterminator that comes in twice a week that goes around the store, and of course we monitor the store every day. It's the best we can do,” said manager Glen Bruno.

Bruno also says two inspection certificates from March and May of this year proves his store shouldn't be on the list.

After hearing that, Klein said he's glad the Associated has cleaned up its act, and he hoping others will follow suit.

- Ruschell Boone

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