In line with the official reopening of the Larsian food strip on Friday, Nov. 16, stricter policies and guidelines will be implemented to address some concerns on food handling and customer service.
Joey Herrera, administrator of Larsian, said to avoid the practice of overpricing or bill padding, owners are now required to place a price list in conspicuous areas of their store and another menu with prices indicated on their respective tables.
“I told them to be transparent in their prices. Ilang stores dapat naay price list. Even on the table, dapat naay price list or menu so that the customers while eating, they can have more or less an idea how much they’re gonna spend,” said Herrera.
Recently, a Facebook post of Edra Benedicto, editor-in-chief of Cebu Daily News, circulated online after she shared her bad dining experience at Larsian.
Benedicto said she was with two other companions when they had lunch in Larsian after visiting her sister-in-law in a nearby hospital.
She said they were made to pay P750 for the food that actually cost only at least P600 by the workers of one of the stall. She mentioned that no receipt was also given to her.
“Ninggawas na ko when I realized na overpriced ko dah. I went back. When I had it itemized and demanded a receipt aron klaro gi-ingnan ba ko nga iuli na lang nila tanan akong gi bayad! Himoon pa kog freeloader aning mga bayhana,” she said.
In an interview, Herrera said he spoke with the owner about the incident, and the worker who was responsible for the overpriced meal was already dismissed from work.
“I talked to the owner and told her na have that particular employee stop working already and inform that particular employee to be banned gyud from Larsian,” he said.
As to the concern of no issuance of receipts, Herrera said he would welcome the Bureau of Internal Revenue to check on the stalls in Larsian so that they will be disciplined.
“If they will have the stores ordered closed then close. Di man gyud ta mo-tolerate ana. It’s common knowledge that you must issue a receipt,” said Herrera.
The Cebu Provincial Government, which is manning the food strip, will now be stricter because of the issues about Larsian.
“I have come up with a written policy and guidelines for them to follow. Ako na gi-discuss nila and it was for everyone to be fair,” he said.
If these policies will not be followed, corresponding penalties will be imposed to the workers and owners.
According to the Larsian administrator, he will make sure that there will be someone from his office whom the customers can approach for any concerns. His office is open until 10 p.m. daily.
Larsian had its soft opening last Nov. 8.
After its three-month rehabilitation, it will be officially reopened on Nov. 16. The new Larsian is now equipped with proper drainage, enough water supply, parking spaces, clean restrooms and washrooms. The roof of the grill area has also been raised further to waft out the smoke away from the diners.
From 22 stalls before, there will be a total of 44 stalls during the reopening on Nov. 16. These are handled by 30 stall owners.
Aside from the famous barbecue of Larsian, other dishes will also be served, such as larang, pochero, humba, sisig, seafood, and desserts like milkshakes and ice cream.
Herrera said all the stalls’ staff underwent a food handling and customer service seminar for free to address the issue on untidy and improper wear of clothes and footwear.
The seminar was initiated by the Capitol, with the support of the Cebu City Government.
He said each staff will have a uniform and an identification card.
“What we are trying to paabot sa mga owners nga it has to be clean, safe to eat. Mao nga I told them in a meeting nga di gyud ko modupa nila kung all government agencies, who are regulating food establishments, (will order them that) they have to comply that. Di gyud ko motolerate ana,” said Herrera.