Unregistered butchers reported to council by concerned member of public
PUBLISHED: 12:50 22 August 2019 | UPDATED: 12:58 22 August 2019
A local councillor has urged the community to stay vigilant after a butcher was caught operating without being registered as a food business.
Lowestoft Butchers was slapped with a zero rating following an inspection by East Suffolk Council officers on June 19.
At the time of inspection, they said they were "very concerned" as there was "no effective food safety management system in place" and warned they could be prosecuted if they didn't register as a food business by July 1.
At time of publication, the store was closed with perishable products being stored in chillers and hand-written sign said they were closed, but would be reopening soon.
Peter Byatt, Kirkley and Pakefield councillor for East Suffolk Council, said a member of the public had raised safety concerns about the store on London Road South following its opening.
He said: "Somebody made contact saying they were worried about the wiring in the shop. I then made contact with environmental health and they said the store was already on their radar. It is good people are observing, they did the right thing. I am pleased somebody came to me about it."
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He urged the community to be aware of the stores operating in the town, and to make contact with their local councillor if it appears to be selling illegal products or feels unsanitary.
A spokesperson for East Suffolk Council confirmed the premises were "voluntarily closed" a few days after the inspection, and have remained closed ever since.
They said: "We will continue to keep a close eye on the premises and have sent a letter with the conditions that need to be met if it were to reopen, including the need to register the business."
During the inspection, it was found the owner was "turning off the chiller units if the overnight temperature was expected to be cold."
A jar of pickled garlic was also found on display and for sale with the safety seal broken, it also appeared to be partially full.
Other worrying findings detailed there was no hand wash basin, no hot water and sanitizer as well as a lack of cleaning and disinfecting of food areas.
The inspector also raised concerns about a lack of pest control in the butcher and the fact staff had not been formally trained.