CEO of Punggol Seafood Restaurant Apologises (Again) for Walking Crabs & Father’s Day Crowd


The House of Seafood restaurant in Punggol has been in hot soup these past few days, receiving criticism from the public for their handling of Father’s Day orders to their publicity stunt which involved staff members walking their crabs.

No, I’m really not kidding. Members of the public might’ve seen these “pet” crabs being brought out for a walk at Punggol Beach last Friday (18 Jun), alongside dog owners. I’m sure those dogs must have been very confused.

We’re supposed to eat seafood, you know, not see (our) food. Get it? See-food?

Breezy Beach Walk

The post on Facebook, now removed due to public backlash, featured pictures of adults and three young children walking these crabs.

According to Mothership, the Punggol seafood restaurant wrote that it was taking its crabs—meant for sale as food for customers—on walks so that the sea creatures do not atrophy (i.e. decrease in size of a body part, cell, organ, or other tissue).

“We love our crabs, the same way as everyone love [sic] their pets,” they wrote.

“To make sure our crabs are really meaty that can satisfy every of our food patrons, we would bring them out strolling along the breezy Punggol Beach, just to get enough exercises… cheers!”


I really wonder who approved of this. Something smells fishy.

Anyway, I’m sure as you would expect, the post drew flak from online users. Many were angry and some even called it cruel to the crabs.

Father’s Day Pre-Order Drew Crowds

Some crabby customers took to Facebook to voice out their frustrations with the seafood restaurant on Father’s Day.

As reported by Mothership, one Facebook user who went by Tan took pictures of the crowd on that day itself. The place was packed like sardines, with many seemingly waiting for their food to be cooked. Little social distancing was observed due to the lack of space.


While Tan had managed to place an order with the restaurant to celebrate Father’s Day, that was not the case on the day of the collection.

On 19 June, the House of Seafood had called her to inform her that her order could be collected at 5:00pm the next day.

However, when she went down on 20 June to collect her food, the restaurant did not have her receipt. In the end, she had to wait for two hours for her food to be prepared.

CEO Holds Live Apology on Facebook

Turns out, this isn’t the first time the House of Seafood had to apologise for their rather odd actions. In 2019, the staff gave a public apology for their live crab claw machine, another cruel mistreatment of its animals.

But back to the current incident(s). The chief executive officer (CEO) of the restaurant, Francis Ng, held a Facebook Live session on Tuesday (22 Jun) to apologise for the recent mishaps.

Addressing the Crab Walking Incident

Funnily enough, Ng had to clarify a few times that he was not selling the crabs on the live stream.

Guess some people really couldn’t get enough of the meaty, specially-walked-on-breezy-Punggol-Beach crabs.

He explained that he took the crabs out on a walk because he had “sympathised” with the crabs that were tied up in the cage the entire day.

That’s rich, coming from a guy who runs a seafood restaurant… which kills crabs.


He added that the walk took only a mere five minutes, and the crabs’ claws were tied up to prevent any harm from occurring to members of the public who came across these crabs.

Children who were curious about the crabs and wanted to play with them were also rejected by him.

Ng even took out a crab during the live show to demonstrate how the restaurant tied them up to ensure safety to passers-by. He did, however, mention that two of the crabs were untied because he was a “crab expert” and could “handle them”.

In his defence, he highlighted that the photos taken of him and the others taking the crabs out for a walk were a “souvenir” to remember the pandemic by.

He also clarified that the crabs which were taken for a walk were not sold in the restaurant for customers to eat. Instead, they were brought home afterwards to be consumed for Father’s Day.

Yeah… I’m sure that’d make a lovely souvenir.


Father’s Day Incident

With regards to the restaurant being overwhelmed on that day, Ng said that some regulars had contacted him directly to place orders with the restaurant after being reminded of its existence due to the crab walking stunt.

As such, he did not want to turn them down and “disappoint them”. So more orders were made in addition to others who had pre-ordered food.

Moreover, the reason why it took so long for customers to get their food was due to the restaurant ensuring that the food was prepared freshly for them.

“All our crabs are cooked upon… when you order and call, we try to cook to maintain standard and freshness at the food temperature,” he explained.

Lastly, he revealed that the staff member wearing the red safe distancing officer shirt was not an actual safe distancing ambassador. In Tan’s Facebook post, this individual could be seen helping the restaurant to manage orders.


Poor guy; could you imagine if safe distancing ambassadors had to help out with something instead of just ambassing safe distancing?

Ng added that their job was to help check customers’ orders, apart from ensuring that safe management measures were in place.

Lack of Manpower

Ultimately, he pointed to a few problems that caused the shortage of manpower in the restaurant. A cited reason was the government and F&B regulations that were put in place to control the spread of COVID-19.

“They don’t allow us to have more staff, maximum 24, reduced to 12,” he said. So, the Punggol outlet, while being flooded with orders, was manned by only half of the staff as compared to usual.

He also emphasised that two of the senior staff members were transferred to the restaurant’s new Clarke Quay outlet.

In light of the comments of poor customer service and a drop in food standards, he promised to send his staff for training and to talk to the chefs as well.

The CEO acknowledged his mistake and said that he would reduce the number of pre-orders to a more manageable number in the future. He added that time slots would also be spread out to avoid overcrowding.

However, he had a bone to pick with some customers’ misleading photos of the queue on that day itself. He claimed that the stretch was a common corridor and the people taken in the photographs might not have been customers as they could just be passing by.


Apparently, he had viewed the CCTV footage and found the crowd to not be an issue.

To Deliver Vouchers or Crabs to Unhappy Customers Personally

Towards the end of the live stream, Ng even gave a few shout-outs to customers who were unhappy with the wait or service of the House of Seafood and promised that he would deliver vouchers or crabs to them personally.

The last ten minutes consisted of him responding to questions posed by the live stream viewers.

He sincerely apologised (and in his own words, “for the third time again”) for the mishaps and hoped that everyone would accept his apology.

Feature Image: Facebook (螃蟹之家 House of Seafood)

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