Wisbech take away posed a salmonella threat, court hears

Tandoori Hut Wisbech

Tandoori Hut Wisbech - Credit: Archant

A former Wisbech Indian take-away boss has been left with a court bill of nearly £4,000 after admitting a string of food and hygiene offences.

Cambridge Crown Court was told that potentially harmful cooked Tandoori chicken was not stored in a fridge, but in an open container at room temperature at the Tandoori Hut in Norfolk Street.

Other unhygienic finds included cooked and fresh food stored together, a sink full of unwashed dishes left overnight, grimy cutting boards, dirty plastic containers on a shelf containing food debris, a dirty pizza slicer, unhygienic utensils and the fridge and microwave were not cleaned properly.

The premises were run by Peterborough man Mohammad Qadeer who told the court: 'I would like to say sorry for the things that have happened. I couldn't run the business properly. I didn't do anything intentionally or on purpose.'

Prosecutor, Simon Hunka told the court: 'The most important was the cooked Tandoori chicken in an open container which a probe showed had a temperature of 20 degrees Celsius.

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'Once bacteria grows, flies can transfer that bacteria around the kitchen. And there was a build up of food debris in other areas.

'There was a clear risk with the chicken. It might be served later that day to an unsuspecting customer.'

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Mr Hunka, prosecuting for Fenland District Council said a diner could contract salmonella.

'It would be obvious not to leave chicken in the warm with no lid on. Food should be stored at less than eight degrees C,' he said.

Qadeer, 35, of Cromwell Road, Peterborough, pleaded guilty to five offences of failing to comply with EU food safety and hygiene regulations.

They related to the temperature of the chicken, lack of cleanliness, how raw ingredients were stored, lack of staff training and not having proper procedures in place.

The court heard that Qadeer was no longer in charge at the Tandoori Hut but still worked there.

Recorder Jeremy Benson QC fined Qadeer a total of £1,500 and ordered him to pay the full local authority costs of £2,319 within 12 months or face 35 days' imprisonment in default. He also has to pay a £120 surcharge.

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