Firms pay thousands for food safety failures

By Rod Addy

- Last updated on GMT

Both firms have been ordered to pay thousands of pounds by local courts
Both firms have been ordered to pay thousands of pounds by local courts

Related tags Food safety Milk

Food safety fines for two firms have been welcomed by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) for upholding laws designed to protect consumers.

GST Ltd, an abattoir in Braintree, Essex, licensed to slaughter turkeys, has been fined £3,500 and ordered to pay £2,100 costs and victim surcharge for operating its premises in October 2014 without official staffing controls.

That meant legally required inspections pre- and post-slaughter inspections, which ensure the producer is upholding consumer safety, were not carried out on a number of slaughtered turkeys, according to the FSA.

Prosecution costs

In addition, dairy farm operator and owner James Flashman from Callington, Cornwall, has been sentenced to a three-year conditional discharge and ordered to pay £2,700 in prosecution costs and a victim surcharge.

Flashman faced the penalty for permitting the sale of raw cow’s drinking milk without being registered to do so by the FSA.

Both firms were found guilty of breaching aspects of the Food Safety & Hygiene Regulations 2013. Sentences were passed on the two separate cases last week. Consumers had not been harmed by the actions of either business, as far as it was aware, the FSA told

Hygiene rules

“These prosecutions help to ensure that consumers are kept safe,”​ said FSA chief operating officer Jason Feeney. In the case of GST, the regulation lays down hygiene rules for foods of animal origin, on the basis that products may represent specific microbiological or chemical hazards to consumer health.

“In the case of Flashman, it is important that dairy farmers are registered with the FSA if they wish to sell raw cows drinking milk. Since the milk is not heat treated there is an additional level of risk involved in drinking it in contrast to pasteurised milk.

“Once​ [companies are] registered, the FSA can ensure that controls on farm are satisfactory and raw milk is tested regularly and sold in appropriate containers that communicate the risks clearly.”

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