Facebook post warns of food poisoning scam in Launceston

Picture: Shutterstock
Picture: Shutterstock

It’s every restaurant owner’s worst nightmare: a customer contracting food poisoning from a meal they were served.

However, not all consumer complaints are what they seem.

A Facebook post circulated this week warned of a man who had called multiple restaurants in Launceston, claiming to have fallen ill from the meal he had eaten.

According to the post, the man would ask for a refund, and then threaten to take his grievances to social media if the proprietors didn’t comply.

Tasmania Hospitality Association chief executive Steve Old said while he was not aware of the post, similar situations had been reported to the THA.

“It doesn’t happen every week, but we occasionally we get some of our members telling us about people booking accommodation under false names and then not paying, or walking out of restaurants without paying,” he said.

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“When we receive these sort of complaints, we generally send out an email to our members, letting them know about the situation, while also keeping the information within The Privacy Act.

“We probably get notified of instances similar to this about once every six weeks.”

As of Friday, the original Facebook post had received 70 reactions and more than 25 comments. 

Mr Old said it was unfortunate that scammers often had to succeed for the word to be spread.

“What usually happens is one venue gets done and then they alert others,” he said.

“The THA, along with its members, does everything it can to stop these sort of situations.”