Salmon was ‘reg­u­larly thawed then re-frozen’ at restau­rant in city

‘EX­TREMELY DAN­GER­OUS’ PRAC­TICE RAPPED BY IN­SPEC­TORS AFTER AU­GUST CHECK BUT VENUE HAS PLEDGED TO IM­PROVE

Derby Telegraph - - NEWS - Paige.old­[email protected]­plc.com @paige­old­field

SALMON was “reg­u­larly thawed then re-frozen” at a Derby restau­rant, a food in­spec­tor was told.

The in­spec­tor said they had “se­ri­ous con­cerns” fol­low­ing a visit to The Kitchen, in Sadler Gate, in Au­gust this year.

They found out-of-date pizza top­pings and over­flow­ing bins cov­ered with flies. The food hy­giene of­fi­cer was also told by staff that it was “com­mon prac­tice” to freeze and de-frost salmon un­til it was all used.

Derby City Coun­cil gave the busi­ness a score of one out of five - mean­ing “ma­jor im­prove­ments are nec­es­sary”.

A spokesman for the firm said the re­port had “been blown out of all pro­por­tions” and he wanted to re­as­sure read­ers that there are no risk to cus­tomers what­so­ever.

The food hy­giene scor­ing sys­tem goes from zero to five. A zero means “ur­gent im­prove­ment is re­quired” while a five means “very good”.

At the time of the in­spec­tion, the hy­giene of­fi­cer dis­cov­ered an open 1kg packed of smoked salmon which had pre­vi­ously been frozen. The re­port said: “It had been wrapped in cling film and was about to be placed back into the freezer un­til re­quired The Kitchen, in Sadler Gate, Derby

again. I was told this is com­mon prac­tice and that the salmon can be frozen and de­frosted sev­eral times un­til it is used up.”

The in­spec­tor said this was “ex­tremely dan­ger­ous” and posed a risk of mi­cro­bial growth and ul­ti­mately food poi­son­ing as it would have been ex­tend­ing the shelf life of the orig­i­nal prod­uct be­yond that given by the man­u­fac­torer.

The of­fi­cer also found a packet of frozen tur­key slices bear­ing a use-by date of 13/06/17 with no la­bel iden­ti­fy­ing when the prod­uct was frozen and noth­ing on the packet to say “suit­able for freez­ing”.

The in­spec­tion noted how the out­side bin was over­flow­ing, smelly, cov­ered in flies and the lid would not close. Bas­kets of bread de­liv­ered in the morn­ing were left next to the bin.

Ready-to-eat smoked salmon was be­ing por­tioned out at the time of the visit us­ing weigh­ing scales that were not cleaned or dis­in­fected prior to the salmon be­ing placed di­rectly on them.

There was no hand soap at the hand wash basin in the bake­house kitchen and no hot water at the wash basin in the pizza area.

The restau­rant’s spokesman said: “We would like to re­as­sure the read­ers and cus­tomers that at no point has there been any risk to cus­tomers. Our track record of not hav­ing a sin­gle com­plaint for food poi­son­ing since be­ing in own­er­ship of The Kitchen says it all.

“We do not pose a risk to any­one and never have. The Kitchen is highly rated by our cus­tomers for the food and clean­li­ness and we serve 100-200 per day with­out a sin­gle com­plaint, it’s all been blown out of pro­por­tion.

“We have worked with the en­vi­ron­men­tal health au­thor­i­ties tire­lessly, have in­vested £1,000s and con­tinue to do so to con­form to reg­u­la­tions. There were some ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties, that is cor­rect but we re­peat no risk.

“We have re­placed the chest freezer with an upright freezer with draw­ers to en­able eas­ier ac­cess and sim­plify clean­ing. En­vi­ron­men­tal Health Of­fi­cers are in­creas­ingly pres­sur­ing and pe­nal­is­ing good, clean busi­nesses in the city cen­tre un­nec­es­sar­ily and our cus­tomers know and see very well when vis­it­ing just how clean our busi­ness is.

“Re­gard­less, we are still work­ing on the is­sues with EHO and are happy to con­tinue to take all their ad­vice and make it all hap­pen in or­der to keep serv­ing good safe food to the pub­lic and keep peo­ple em­ployed.”

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