The rodent was found at the fast food restaurant Xiabu Xiabu, famous for its hotpots, in Weifang, a city in the eastern province of Shandong. The staff at the restaurant allegedly offered the couple 20,000 yuan, which is $3,000 USA dollars, for them to have an abortion if they were concerned for the child's health.
The restaurant allegedly later offered Ma 5,000 yuan ($728) in compensation for the incident - a price he was willing to negotiate after the hospital visit, he told the South China Morning Post.
A dead rat has caused a Chinese restaurant to lose a great deal of money.
When her husband alerted the staff, they allegedly offered the couple 20,000 yuan (S$4,000) to get an abortion if they were anxious about their baby's health, KanKan News reported. "Is a life worth only 20,000 yuan?" one person said.
The local market supervision authority has launched an investigation into the incident and the outlet where the rat was discovered has been shut down. "I'm never going to eat hotpot outside again", said one user.
By Sept. 11, the company's share price hit the lowest level since October of past year. In all, the discovery of the rat had knocked about $190 million off the market value of the business, which is publicly traded in Hong Kong.
"Xiabu Xiabu has always been one of my favourite restaurants, I thought they were quite clean as well..."
Hotpot is a common meal in China and across other parts of Asia.
Hotpot soups are a popular Chinese dish where seasoned broth is placed, simmering, at the table in front of you as the items are added in. In a statement published on Sunday on the Chinese messaging platform WeChat, the bureau said that while it found no traces of rats, the restaurant had committed violations related to stagnant water and buying food from unlicensed suppliers.
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