Conditions at Cork food business premises deemed a 'grave danger to public health'

Conditions at Cork food business premises deemed a 'grave danger to public health'

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) today reported that four Closure Orders and one Prohibition Order were served on food businesses during the month of September for breaches of food safety legislation. Stick image.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) today reported that four Closure Orders and one Prohibition Order were served on food businesses during the month of September for breaches of food safety legislation.

One was served on David Kra, who produces food at a unit in Midleton Enterprise Park, Dwyers Road, Midleton, Cork under the FSAI Act, 1998.

In the inspector's report it's noted that "adequate procedures were not in place to control pests" and "large cobwebs [were] hanging down throughout the unit".

The inspector said the structure of the premises was extremely poor, and highlighted that no hot water was available in the unit, and while there were three sinks, "only one sink had cold running water".

"Completely inadequate preparation surfaces were provided," according to the report.

The inspector said that the conditions of the unit "lead to a serious risk to the contamination of foodstuffs and therefore is a grave and immediate danger to public health".

The closure order was imposed on September 17, and according to the FSAI website, has not yet been lifted.

In other cases where businesses nationally were served closure orders, some of the reasons included; flies noted throughout the premises; mice faeces noted in a room used to store burger buns; build-up of food debris and grease; a poor standard of personal hygiene by a food handler; raw foods stored above cooked foods in a fridge; food stored at unsafe temperatures; no evidence of regular hand washing; no pest control systems in place; completely inadequate food preparation surfaces; no facilities for disinfecting of crockery or utensils; food was wrapped in a freezer with a dead insect on its wrapping; food was being prepared cooked and served in an area where timber was also being chopped with an axe; a food worker had not received any training in food hygiene matters; a failure to provide traceability documentation.

Commenting, Dr Pamela Byrne, Chief Executive, FSAI, said that all food businesses must take their legal responsibility seriously to ensure they protect the health of consumers by complying with food law.

“It is a continuous disappointment that each month food inspectors find serious non-compliances in food businesses that can put consumers’ health at risk. Businesses failed to comply with food safety, hygiene and proper food storage and handling standards that are in place to protect consumers’ health. 

"Food businesses also need to ensure that their premises have the right food safety management procedures in place to ensure pest control and best hygiene practice at all times.

“Also, it is the responsibility of all food business owners to ensure that their food business is registered and operating in line with the legal requirements under food law. Failure to do so will not be tolerated. 

"This was evident in September where a prosecution was taken in relation to an unregistered food business involved in the transportation of beef. It followed an investigation by the FSAI in conjunction with veterinary inspectors from Offaly County Council, South Dublin County Council, Meath County Council and Longford County Council,” added Dr Byrne.

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