Posted on Friday 2 February 2018
A Dunston Chinese takeaway has been fined £1,636 by Gateshead Magistrates after failing to meet food hygiene standards.
Environmental health officers visited the West View Chinese Takeaway on West View Terrace, Dunston, unannounced on 24 July 2017 to establish whether the issues raised during a previous food hygiene inspection had been addressed.
The inspection found that standards of cleanliness and controls to prevent cross contamination were very poor. Throughout the premises there were significant accumulations of dirt, grease and food debris on preparation surfaces, equipment and under fixtures. Wet sticky grease and food debris had been allowed to build up through lack of thorough cleaning.
Inspectors found that practices relating to temperature controls were also poor. There were large quantities of rice, cooked meat and chicken being stored outside safe temperatures, potentially allowing bacteria to grow and toxins to form. It was also not clear if effective handwashing was being carried out by the staff.
In the environmental health officer’s opinion the conditions within the premises posed a “health risk condition” in that the poor hygiene standards presented an imminent risk of injury to health to the public.
Owner Mr Tuck Chee Su, voluntarily closed the takeaway to undertake thorough cleaning and repairs and to establish more comprehensive food safety controls. A further inspection of the premises showed the takeaway hygiene standards and cleanliness had improved, but further work was still needed. A further visit on 27 July 2017 showed that standards of hygiene had significantly improved and the premises was allowed to reopen.
On 31 January 2018, Mr Tuck Chee Su pleaded guilty to charges of failing to keep the premises clean and failing to keep equipment which comes into contact with food clean. He was fined £589 for each offence, a £58 victim surcharge and £400 costs. A total of £1,636.
Anneliese Hutchinson, Service Director, Development Transport and Public Protection said: “This conviction sends out an important message about the importance Gateshead Council places on ensuring that the food served in the borough’s food businesses is safe and hygienically prepared.
There is no excuse for taking shortcuts when it comes to food hygiene.
“Residents and visitors to our borough should never be exposed to unnecessary health risks and I strongly urge all our food operators to take this opportunity to review their procedures and policies.”