Published: Fri, December 14, 2018
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

ESPN Reveals NBA Arenas With The Worst & Best Food-Safety Inspection Ratings

ESPN Reveals NBA Arenas With The Worst & Best Food-Safety Inspection Ratings

Win or lose, Minnesotans love their sports teams.

The ESPN investigation compiled 16,000 reports on food quality at 111 sports arenas around the country. Why don't they make it a priority to keep it clean, especially when it comes to food and beverage services?

Across the country, ESPN found that 28 percent of the venues had high-level violations at more than half of the outlets inspected.

The top three stadiums in all of North American professional sports are Oracle Arena (Warriors, 1.12 percent), State Farm Arena (Hawks, 4.17 percent) and NRG Stadium (Texans, 4.44 percent).

Here's a rundown of the Twin Cities venues analyzed by ESPN.

Target Field didn't rank much better, scoring a 50.4 percent due to reports of rodents and insects, food temperature issues and lack of hand washing at the ballpark's outlets.

"We treat food safety with the utmost care".

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"If any violation is pointed out, it is addressed and corrected immediately. We are committed to continuing to meet health department standards to ensure the safety of our guests".

At Bank of America Stadium, the report cited "moldy, expired cream cheese along with out-of-date deli turkey" in the main kitchen, raw beef dripping blood in an area where ready-to-eat food was stored, and employees who didn't wash their hands, including one who handled raw beef and then touched utensils.

Response: "At every event held at Target Center, our primary focus is always directed toward the safety of our guests, and a key component of that focus is on the safety of our food and beverage", reads a statement provided by Levy, the arena's concessionaire.

"We work closely on regular inspections with the New York City Department of Health, whose rigorous participation is welcomed".

Among the violations were meats left at unsafe temperatures that could potentially breed bacteria, employees inappropriately handling food for customers, moldy or expired food, dirty or contaminated utensils and the presence of live cockroaches or mice.

Despite the rankings, some stadiums came off looking a lot worse than beer leaking from a ceiling: At Denver's Coors Field, one report found a live mouse in a commercial-size bag of Cracker Jack.

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