A Norfolk food company has been fined £75,000 after it admitted responsibility for discharging contaminated liquid into a brook.

Cranswick Country Foods based in Watton agreed to pay £75,000 to the Norfolk Rivers Trust as part of a fine from the Environment Agency.

The company also paid £15,000 in costs after contaminated liquid escaped from a pork processing site operated by Cranswick on Brandon Road in the town during August 2019.

It comes after an investigation by the Environment Agency revealed the discharge, from a drainage outlet controlled by the abattoir spilled into a tributary of the Watton Brook, a rare chalk stream.

The Environment Agency found no lasting impact to the environment, with Cranswick preventing further discharge from the drainage pipe into the ditch until the source could be identified.

An enforcement undertaking was accepted by the Environment Agency as it was satisfied the discharge of the contaminated liquid was an accident.

Following proceedings, the company also took steps to reduce the risk of reoccurrence, with no further incidents happening since.

The charity donation paid to Norfolk Rivers Trust will help fund a project to improve the environment and the watercourse concerned.

Cranswick Country Foods has been contacted for comment.

Members of the public with concerns about pollution should contact the Environment Agency’s 24-hour incident hotline on 0800 80 70 60.