NEARLY two dozen restaurants were closed over hygiene standards in Mallorca last year.

Another two were temporarily shut, while 125 received fines of up to €5,000, according to the ministry of health.

Alarmingly 15 restaurants got a ‘zero’ rating for cleanliness, described by the island’s food and safety boss Margalida Buades as ‘horrible, an absolute disaster’.

“A tourist region simply cannot allow such high figures,” she wrote in her annual report.

In total, 3,071 inspections were undertaken in 2017, with each restaurant scoring from zero to five, depending on its level of hygiene.  Of the inspections the majority got below the desired four or five, with 60% scoring zero to three.

A total of 23 restaurants were closed, with two others in Pollensa and Marratxi being allowed to stay open by taking various drastic measures.

Meanwhile, 14 establishments just scraped by with a one star rating, meaning that while dirty they did not endanger the health of customers.  Some 275 restaurants were awarded with a two-star rating.

One of the reasons given for the poor hygiene standards is that in summer staff were overworked and unable to maintain cleaning levels.  Also, many seasonal workers are improperly trained when it comes to health and safety regulations.   

Buades also believes that not enough professionals are running restaurants in Mallorca and too many owners are short of experience.