£22,000 in fines for Laisterdyke food plant over dirt and moth infestation (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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£22,000 in fines for Laisterdyke food plant over dirt and moth infestation
A food milling company in Bradford has been ordered to pay more than £22,500 in fines and costs after hygiene inspectors uncovered premises infested with moths and equipment covered in caterpillar droppings.
Arcadia Food Industries in Pawson Street, Laisterdyke, mills grain, rice, spices and pulses to be sold as food.
But an environmental health officer, visiting for a routine inspection on July 6 last year, found floors thick with flour, live moths and broken equipment stuck together with sticky tape.
On a second visit four days later, another officer uncovered a moth infestation.
Moth caterpillar droppings were found in cracks in the floor, in the walls and ceiling and on top of milling equipment.
“The milling plant had been ill-repaired with clear sticking tape and live moths were found on the premises.
“On the second visit, a significant moth infestation was found.”
The court heard the owners, brothers Amjid and Sajid Baig, agreed to close down the premises until the pest and hygiene problems were dealt with.
Mitigating for the firm, Richard Wright QC said: “This was a company who have taken their eye off the ball. Things had got bad.
“They were put right immediately and haven’t fallen back.”
He said the mill had since undergone a deep clean, and had passed a Council inspection on September 6 this year.
He said: “This is a company that has traded for more than 30 years in Bradford, is a reputable business, pays its tax and employs a number of people.
“It has no previous history of offending of this type, or of any other type.”
Amjid and Sajid Baig, who did not appear at court, pleaded guilty to eight hygiene offences.
Magistrates imposed a fine of £16,658 and court costs of £5,936.
After the hearing, Councillor Andrew Thornton, Bradford Council’s executive member for environment, said: “We will do everything we can to ensure that food businesses in Bradford are operated with the highest standards of hygiene in place.
“We are always willing to work in partnership with and advise food business owners how to achieve the required standards, but if they ignore that advice and continue to operate from dirty premises and use poor hygiene practises, we won’t hesitate to prosecute.
“We are glad of the support of the courts to help us make sure that consumers face no risks from food produced or processed in Bradford.”