Chester restaurant owners fined over £11,800 for food hygiene offences
29 July 2019The owners of a restaurant in Chester have been fined a total of £11,848 for food hygiene offences.
On Thursday, 25 July at Chester Magistrates Court, Chester Foods Ltd trading as Barton Rouge, Granary Wharf, Steam Mill Street, Chester, Mr Kashem Ali Tahid (52) of Brooklands Road, Manchester and Mr Mohammed Aamir Latif (43) of Arbour Drive Manchester, the owners of Chester Foods Ltd, were convicted of food safety and hygiene offences.
On 25 July 2018, Regulatory Services officers visited Barton Rouge to undertake a routine food hygiene inspection and found evidence of a German cockroach infestation and poor standards of cleanliness throughout the premises.
The level of cockroach activity was such that officers saw live insects run up the walls, across the floor and over their feet when equipment was moved. A significant build of dirt and food debris was found throughout the food handling and storage areas, floor surfaces were found to be in a poor condition, a wash hand basin was inaccessible and clearly not in use and there was no food safety management control in the business.
The premises were voluntarily closed with immediate effect until the pest activity could be eradicated and the premises had undergone a deep clean. The premises re-opened two weeks later when officers were satisfied that there was no longer an imminent risk to public health in that there was no further evidence of pest activity and the standards of cleanliness had been much improved.
Whilst it was noted that Mr Tahid had suffered particularly difficult personal circumstances during the period before the inspection, Magistrates, upon sentencing, stated that they could only consider it as personal mitigation, as given his twenty years’ experience in the industry it should have been blatantly obvious that standards did not come close to those required for food hygiene and safety. In Mr Latif's case, Magistrates found, that given his significant investment in the company, he should have taken all necessary actions to ensure compliance.
Chester Foods Limited received a £8000 fine, £700 costs plus £170 victim surcharge, Mr Tahid received an £800 fine, £685 costs and £80 victim surcharge and Mr Latif received a £665 fine, £682 costs and £66 victim surcharge.
The Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport, Councillor Karen Shore said: “The very poor standards in this restaurant could have had serious consequences for its customers. For any food business the safety of customers must be their top priority.
”The vast majority of food establishments in Cheshire West operate to a high standard; we have a duty to the public to take effective action where others do not make the same effort.
“Officers within our Regulatory Services Team work proactively to help business owners comply with legislation and meet hygiene standards and food safety.”