Image by Rushmoor Borough Council
The restaurant, Momo Station in Station Road closed voluntarily for immediate improvement work after an inspection by the council’s Environmental Health Officers on 3 July found a storage building at the back of the premises was infested with rats. They also discovered low-level cockroach activity in the kitchen, which was in a dirty condition. These issues posed a risk to food safety.
Following the improvement work, the business was allowed to re-open within a week.
Environmental Health Officer Julie Burke, the investigating officer, said “Where standards of food hygiene are found to be below acceptable levels, we will take immediate and appropriate action to make sure food is safe and customers are not put at risk. Owners of food businesses have a duty to carry out basic checks for pests and to take effective action where they find problems. They should not rely on our visits to discover they have an infestation or that an area needs to be cleaned.”
Mr Amit Gurung, Director, accepted the caution for four food safety offences on 30 August 2017. He said: “I acknowledge the problem and have fixed the problem straight away. Since the incident, we are working very closely with the pest control company and Environmental Health. Hygiene is the number one priority for my business. I can assure you that this will not happen again in the future.”
Buddha Convenience Store
In a similar inspection on 7 June 2017, the owners of Buddha Convenience Store also in Station Road, Aldershot closed to carry out improvements when Environmental Health Officers discovered a rodent infestation in their shop. Following improvements to the pest proofing of the premises, the store was able to re-open a few days later.
Principal Food Safety Officer Oliver Robinson, who investigated the case, said: “It is not acceptable for shops serving food to have rodents in their premises – adequate proofing and procedures should be in place to ensure effective pest control. Where problems are found, we will take swift action to ensure food safety.”
Mr Sushil Gurung, Director, accepted the caution for three food safety offences on 31 August 2017. He said: “We had measures in place, however, they were inadequate. With the assistance of Oliver and Julie, we have made improvements on our short comings and going forward we are confident these offences will not be repeated.”
Councillor Ken Muschamp, Rushmoor Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Business, Safety and Regulation, said: “These cases show that the council is committed to protecting the public and that it is unacceptable for food businesses to disregard their duty to protect the safety of food for their customers. I fully support our officers who are doing a great job as they continue to carry out extensive investigations to establish the sources of infestations such as these.”