The five biggest food hygiene penalties issued in Birmingham
Birmingham City Council has prosecuted numerous restaurants - here’s the five biggest penalties issued from April to June 2023
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Rat droppings next to takeaway forks and a pigeon flying around a wholesale meat warehouse are just two offences landing Birmingham restaurants in hot water with Environmental Health in recent months. The Birmingham City Council division has handed down over £90,000 worth of food hygiene penalties over April, May and June this year.
Over the three-month period, five venues were ordered to pay thousands of pounds after they were found guilty of hygiene-related offences in court. Environmental Health cases, which included incidents of littering, resulted in a total of £146,826 in fines, with prosecution costs of £54,937.
This is down from a total of £210,612 in fines and £48,947 in prosecution costs recorded by the council across January, February and March 2023. A list of the five biggest penalties handed down by the courts over April, May and June is as follows:
1. Chicken Hut, Handsworth
The largest fine imposed over the three months was at Chicken Hut on Rookery Road, Handsworth. Environmental health slapped the fast food venue with a £27,284 penalty for a litany of hygiene horrors.
An officer’s report said: “There was a large accumulation of oil and food debris on the floor below the kebab meat unit and in the front service area. Uncovered drainage in the rear storage area and in the rear kitchen provided a point of ingress for pests and there was a gnawed hole at the bottom of an external rear door.
“Mouse droppings were found throughout the premises. There was no designated wash hand basin in the main kitchen where raw and ready-to-eat food was being prepared. The sink in the front service area had no water supply and a coat was folded inside the basin.”
2. Bani’s Fast Food, Alum Rock
Inspectors found rat droppings next to wooden takeaway forks and napkins at Bani’s Fast Food on Washwood Heath Road. A series of hygiene indiscretions landed the owners with a £16,000 fine, bumped up to £17,589 after court costs.
An environmental health report said: “There were rat droppings throughout the premises, on top of boxes containing food packaging, near cans of drinks on the server counter shelving and on shelving next to wooden forks and napkins. There was mould growth on the refrigerator shelving in the rear kitchen.”
3. Parathawala, Alum Rock
The owner of Parathawala on Alum Rock Road was given a penalty of £13,558 after packets of sugar and flour were found to have been gnawed by rats. Rodent droppings were found throughout the premises on three separate inspection dates.
An environmental health report said there was an accumulation of grease, dirt and debris each time they visited. Live cockroaches were also found close to food storage and preparation areas on the third inspection as well as dirt and food debris on the walls and surfaces.
4. Chali Garden, Sparkbrook
Chaii Garden on Alfred Street, Sparkbrook, failed to comply with hygiene improvement notices requiring accurate allergy information to be provided for all food and drink and the installation of a flush toilet for staff to use. The offence landed the vene a £15,176 penalty, handed down in June.
5. Fakir Halal Donners, Small Heath
Wholesale meat provider Fakir Halal Donners on Green Lane received a £9,164 penalty in June. Several hygiene offences were found by inspectors relating to rodent presence and even a pigeon.
The environmental health report said: “Adequate procedures were not in place to control pests. A pigeon was seen flying above food, bags of dried food had been gnawed by rats and dead flies were found.
“The premises were dirty and structurally in poor repair and condition, no hot water supply was provided to wash hand basins, the bowl chopper was extensively dirty and washing-up bowls were used to store food.”