Norfolk take-away firm fined more than £6,000 for hygiene offences
PUBLISHED: 17:16 11 July 2019 | UPDATED: 10:41 12 July 2019
A Norfolk-based Indian take-away firm has been fined more than £6,000 after food debris was discovered on a cooker top and meals were stored at temperatures which "could result in a risk to health".
Norwich Magistrates Court heard that rice, egg shells and spilt spices were found discarded on a cooker top at Al-Haqq's Kitchen in North Walsham.
On the same visit, an officer from North Norfolk District Council also found takeaway meals, including a chicken masala meal and chicken korma meal which were stored at temperatures which "could result in a risk to health".
Norwich Magistrates Court heard the visit, which was carried out on March 30, 2018, was a follow-up to an earlier one when the restaurant had been served with a prohabition notice due to out of date gas equipment being used.
The court heard the equipment had been disconnected following the council officer's visit but that staff at the Mundesley Road-based business had reconnected the equipment, unbeknown to the owner, which was in use when the council officer called in.
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The firm was said to have contravened/failed to comply with EU provision concerning food and safety hygiene in that it failed to keep the premises clean.
There was also found to be "no effective food management" with "inadequate processes relating to temperature control in place to protect food from harmful bacteria", while in addition a wash basin in the kitchen was obstructed by a spoon making it "inappropriate as a functioning hand washing basin".
The firm entered guilty pleas to the food hygiene offences as well as failing to comply with a prohibition notice.
Ajay Patel, prosecuting, said the offences put customers at risk of potential harm which could have been caused.
Alistair Taunton, mitigating, said the firm had been around for almost 20 years with no previous problems.
He said the gas equipment was found to be out of date and disconnected with the boss having arranged for new equipment to be bought, but on a day he was off, the equipment had been reconnected and turned back on. Mr Taunton added it had been a "one off".
The company was fined a total of £6,600, ordered to pay £1,500 costs and a £170 victim surcharge.