House Of Seafood CEO Claims Crabs From Claw Machine Would Be Released

House of Seafood recently came under heavy fire after its live crab claw machine went viral on social media.

Many netizens, especially animal lovers, thought the marketing gimmick was distasteful and slammed the restaurant for causing “harm and distress” to the crabs.

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On Thursday (24 Oct), the Punggol establishment has finally voiced out against online outrage after a day of silence.

House of Seafood CEO Mr Francis Ng issued a Facebook statement, apologising for the “inconvenience and unhappiness” caused.

You can read the post in full here.

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The restaurant has also suspended the crab claw machine following the public outcry.

House of Seafood crab claw machine meant to educate kids

According to the statement, the seafood restaurant had never intended for the crabs in the machine to be used as “play things”.

Mr Ng shared that they originally intended to use the machine to educate large groups of children who were always in the area about marine life.

In fact, he claimed that the restaurant encourages the kids to release the crustaceans they had caught back into the ocean.

CEO’s claims seem doubtful

However, the restaurant allegedly offered to cook the crabs for free in the earlier promo, based on coverage by SHOUT on Tuesday (22 Oct).

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Netizens are realising that the CEO’s claims could be a lie, in view of the promo, as well as the law prohibiting the release of animals into public spaces.

SPCA cites that releasing any animal into “our public parks, reservoirs, nature reserves and other places” is “against the law” in Singapore.

Those guilty of this offence may face a fine of up to $50,000, imprisonment of up to 6 months, or both.

Claw machine suspended but promo posts still up

The claw machine has apparently ceased operations in light of the public outcry.

An “under maintenance” sign was reported attached to it when The Straits Times reporters went down to the restaurant on Thursday (24 Oct).

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Interestingly, however, House of Seafood has left their earlier promos up on Facebook.

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Which begs the question – how sorry are they for the blunder? If a company was truly sorry, they would have taken down any offensive posts, yet, theirs are still available for viewing.

Hope firms will be more sensitive for future marketing campaigns

While the execution of House of Seafood’s claw machine is definitely questionable, at least the restaurant has spoken out to address people’s concerns.

We hope this incident will serve as a reminder to all companies to be more thoughtful when marketing campaigns, especially when it involves the lives of others.

Featured image adapted from The Straits Times