Former owner of Lye butchers sentenced for food hygiene offences

A former owner of a Black Country butchers has admitted eight food hygiene offences.

Madni Halal Meat, in High Street, Lye. Photo: Google Maps
Madni Halal Meat, in High Street, Lye. Photo: Google Maps

Asif Riaz, previous owner of Madni Halal Meat, in High Street, Lye, appeared at Wolverhampton Crown Court on March 22.

It came after environmental health officers from Dudley Council carried out a routine food hygiene inspection in May 2019, where poor standards were discovered and the premises was rated as a zero in the food hygiene scheme.

The court heard that cleaning standards were poor, the floor surface in the food room was damaged and unclean, there was no soap provided at the wash basin for washing hands, and the door to the rear yard was left open allowing flies access into the premises.

Cardboard and other refuse was not stored suitably, and raw meat was stored in a way that presented a risk of contamination to ready-to-eat food. The food safety management system was incomplete and Riaz failed to notify the authority that there had been a change in ownership.

Riaz was sentenced to four weeks imprisonment for each of the offences which has been suspended for 12 months. He was also ordered to undertake 100 hours community service and pay £2,000 towards costs.

Unsatisfactory

Dudley Council confirmed that there has now been a change in ownership of the food business and that Riaz was no longer the proprietor.

Karen Wright, director of public health and wellbeing at Dudley Council, said: "The public have a right to expect that shops from which they purchase their food do not put their health at risk. It is right that this proprietor has now been held to account for the most unsatisfactory conditions found by our inspectors.

"We much prefer to work with businesses to secure compliance with the law, but we will not hesitate to take legal action against the minority of food businesses proprietors who fail to meet their legal responsibilities and put the health of the public at risk.

"Over half of all food outlets in the borough are achieving the top hygiene rating of five and the vast majority achieve a satisfactory rating of three or more. I would urge consumers to check out hygiene ratings online as these will give consumers a glimpse of what is going on in the kitchen when they eat out, or behind the scenes at the places they shop."

Dudley Council environmental health officers carry out regular inspections of food premises in the borough to advise food business owners and ensure they meet all food safety and hygiene requirements.

Ratings in Dudley can be viewed online at www.dudley.gov.uk/foodsafety or at www.food.gov.uk/ratings.

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