Making sure your festive food is safe to eat

Date published: 27 November 2019

With Christmas around the corner many people will be out and about enjoying meals, during the festivities.

Before you buy takeaways or meals, there's a warning about checking that the eatery is up to standard.

Food businesses are given a rating by Oldham council based on how they comply with the legal requirements for hygiene, structural condition and confidence in the management.

Following a food hygiene inspection, a business is rated from five for a very good through to a zero for those premises that need to improve urgently.

To make sure our food businesses are serving up food fit to eat our Environmental Health officers regularly carry out inspections.

Many of the food businesses in the borough – more than 90 per cent – have a food hygiene rating of 3 or above.

Unfortunately, a small percentage of business owners are still not meeting the standards.

Our officers found dirty conditions when they visited Spicy Bites, Middleton Road, Chadderton on November 14, 2018.

Mouse droppings were discovered throughout the premises – including on food equipment and shelving, on top of the tandoori oven and in pizza dough tins.

The UV fly killer was full of dead flies and had not been cleaned for some time. Flies were also stuck to the top of the hot cabinet.

In August this year the takeaway owner, Malik Miah, of Sterling Street, Oldham pleaded guilty to one charge under Food Safety Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013 during a court appearance.

During that court appearance he also pleaded not guilty to a second charge under the same regulations and was ordered to stand trial.

On November 20 at Tameside Magistrates’ Court he was found guilty of the second charge and ordered to pay a fine of £700, costs of £1,150 plus a victim surcharge of £72.

The court heard Miah closed the business and sold it in March this year.

Helen Lockwood, Deputy Chief Executive of Oldham Council, said: “No one wants to eat at a place that is dirty or is serving food that could potentially make you ill.

“Businesses have to comply with food hygiene laws and we will continue to prosecute the ones we find that don’t.

“Food businesses need to keep their premises clean and not wait until our officers have visited to make the necessary improvements.”

All Oldham food business ratings are on the Food Standards Agency website.


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