Owner of Hednesford takeaway in court after selling food with nuts in to customer with allergy
A takeaway owner has been handed a 20-week suspended prison sentence after selling food which contained peanuts to a customer with a nut allergy who ended up in hospital.
Mohammed Badrul Islam, the owner of Rosehill Balti and Takeaway, in Hednesford, was sentenced at Stafford Crown Court yesterday for offences relating to selling food that contained peanuts which was described as being free from nuts and peanuts.
The court heard that on February 8, 2019, Tony Locke from Hednesford, ordered a Modhu Minty Lamb Aloo from the business. The 41-year-old explained that he had a nut allergy and the dish could not have nuts in it.
But after returning home with the meal and after having just two forkfuls of the dish, Mr Locke suffered a severe allergic reaction and ended up in hospital.
The case was reported to Staffordshire County Council’s Trading Standards service who made a test purchase of the same meal on March 13 2019. Following testing by a specialist team, the curry powder in the dish was found to have nut powder in it.
Islam, of Broadway, Walsall, told the court he did not know that the curry powder that was being used as part of the ingredients for the dish sold to Mr Locke contained nuts.
Nuts were not an ingredient that he expected or knew to be present in the curry powder. The 55-year-old accepted that it was his responsibility to ensure that a nut free dish was exactly that. He also expressed regret and remorse that Mr Locke suffered an allergic reaction that necessitated the need for him to attend hospital.
The court ordered Islam to pay Mr Locke £1,000 in compensation as well as to pay a £115 victim surcharge and carry out 150 hours of unpaid community work.
The limited company running the business was also fined £3,000 and was ordered to pay £250 costs.
Islam pleaded guilty to the offences at an earlier court hearing on December 2, 2019.
Gill Heath, cabinet member for communities at Staffordshire County Council said: “Food allergies are a growing concern and can be life threatening, and is something that our teams are taking very seriously.
“We work with food businesses right across the county to remind them of their responsibilities and importance of clearly labelled ingredients on food products and menus. Where this isn’t the case we will take appropriate action as in this case.
“Unfortunately, we’ve now had several incidents in Staffordshire where people have ended up in hospital as a result of being served food that has given them a severe reaction. Our job is to help keep people safe and if people choose a food outlet and are in any doubt about what’s in their food, they should walk out.”
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