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Simon

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Posted 07 September 2006 - 08:20 PM

A couple of recent UK news items.

Fine for mice infested restaurant

A Chinese restaurant infested with mice and cockroaches has been fined £22,000 for breaching food safety regulations.

The Golden Dragon in Gerrard Street in London's China Town was closed after an inspection by Westminster Council food safety officers last year.

City of Westminster magistrates heard mouse droppings were found in storage areas and on clean plates and meat appeared to have been gnawed by mice.

Leadfield Ltd admitted 11 breaches of food safety standards.

The company was fined £2,000 for each breach and ordered to pay £325.16 costs.
The court was shown photographs taken by inspectors on 8 August, 2005 showing black mould growing on kitchen floors, walls, doors and pipes.

James Armitage, of Westminster City Council's food safety team, said peeling paint was falling from the ceiling on to food in the meat drying room.

"There were basic failures to protect raw food from contamination, there was no soap or hand drying facilities in the kitchen", he said.

Chef sacked
Mr Armitage said there are more than 5,000 restaurants in Westminster and "this is one of the worst examples I have ever seen".

Gary Grant, defending, told the court that a new head chef, brought in three months before the inspection, was to blame for the situation.

"Leadfield Ltd take full responsibility for the actions of their chef but he did the minimum possible... and that's what led to the state of the kitchen," he said.

Four days after being issued with an emergency prohibition notice the restaurant was allowed to reopen after it carried out necessary work to remove the risk to public health.

Mr Grant said the restaurant had since sacked the chef, spent £60,000 refitting the kitchen and had employed a hygiene consultant.

Source: www.bbc.co.uk


Pretty disgusting we'd all agree, however food safety is a cost to the business and some unscrupulous business owners choose not to invest in this 'non value added' area of their business.

Or is food safety 'non value added', could this new food safety rating system be the answer?

Takeaway court threat after visit

A takeaway has become the first premises to fail to score any points in a new scheme trialled by a council.

DiMaggios, in Coventry's Burgess shopping area, could face prosecution after receiving no stars in the scheme.

The city has been chosen by the Food Standards Agency to pilot the project which reveals the results of food hygiene inspections.

Premises are awarded stars which must be displayed to the public. More than 500 hot food outlets have been scored.

Consumer guide

A council spokesman said: "We have always 'scored' these matters using the national food safety risk rating scheme. However, this national scheme is quite complex and so to make matters easier for the public to understand, these scores will now be translated into star ratings.

"Premises will continue to be assessed for food safety practices, the condition and cleanliness of the structure and equipment, and confidence in the management systems - but the scoring system will now be more straightforward."
The council will produce a consumer guide for the best and worst food places in the city. The hygiene test results can also be viewed on the council's website.

No stars means formal action may be taken after inspectors found poor standards.

'Danger to the public'
Establishments with one star must improve their standards, those with two showed satisfactory conditions of food safety. To gain three stars, outlets must achieve a high level of food safety and demonstrate "good practice".

The council said DiMaggios received no stars because standards of food hygiene and cleaning were poor and there was no confidence in the management to improve.

"A judgement when to prosecute is made in relation to guidance from the Home Office. However, if inspection shows that there is a danger to public health, it can be closed immediately, " a spokesman said.

A decision has not yet been taken as whether to prosecute Di Maggios.

Rafi Nabi, from the restaurant said: "They came to visit us but we have not been told the results yet. They said they would send us somethng and come back in a month."

Source: www.bbc.co.uk


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Charles.C

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Posted 11 September 2006 - 09:12 AM

Dear Simon,

I sincerely hope this UK scheme will not start producing items like this -

http://www.nzherald....jectID=10117446

I tried dialling into one of the "scoresonthedoors" districts and they had approx 24 locations with zero stars but I failed to find out what the precise criteria were.

Rgds / Charles.C


Kind Regards,

 

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Simon

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Posted 11 September 2006 - 08:00 PM

Dear Simon,

I sincerely hope this UK scheme will not start producing items like this -

http://www.nzherald....jectID=10117446

I tried dialling into one of the "scoresonthedoors" districts and they had approx 24 locations with zero stars but I failed to find out what the precise criteria were.

Rgds / Charles.C


I'm in agreement with the principle of rating systems if they can be applied consistently and kept up to date. However, monitoring and administering the system is such a massive job, I doubt that it could be.

Simon

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Jean

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Posted 11 June 2008 - 11:10 AM

Does the system “Scores on the doors” drive the food establishment to follow good hygiene practices all the time and ensure their premises are kept clean. Do the customers prefer dining after checking on the scores or depending on their choice or food / place?



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GMO

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Posted 11 June 2008 - 03:17 PM

I used to look on the website of a local council who would publish all audits (including local food factories). It was fascinating to look at everyone else's audits but annoying when my factory had a local news story about it when the two points raised were very minor (and would have got an excellent rating if scored).

The problem with publishing the detail is people don't understand it. I would be horrified if a premises didn't have suitable controls for cooking for example but it's always the pest controls that make the headlines. Although it's a simplification, it does make food safety a PR thing which makes it directly related to profit and I am of the opinion that it is no bad thing!



Simon

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Posted 11 June 2008 - 07:27 PM

The problem with publishing the detail is people don't understand it. I would be horrified if a premises didn't have suitable controls for cooking for example but it's always the pest controls that make the headlines. Although it's a simplification, it does make food safety a PR thing which makes it directly related to profit and I am of the opinion that it is no bad thing!

I agree. Has anyone been to a restaurant or eatery that displays their scores or audit report or anything?

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