A food warehouse in Park Royal and two of its directors have been fined £156,000 by Ealing Council following a number of hygiene and safety breaches in running a business during 2020 and 2021.
Ealing Council took the decision to prosecute Yekta Foods Ltd in Minerva Road, Park Royal after officers from the council’s food and workplace safety team found a number of breaches during four separate occasions between November 2020 and April 2021.
Among the issues which were raised at a hearing at Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court earlier this month, there were no enough washing facilities, staff used sinks in the toilets to clean equipment, food packaged with limited information about allergens, food stored in a dirty fridge and lack of traceability in the source of where food products on the premises came from and where they were being sent to.
At the court hearing, on 7 June 2022, Yekta Foods Ltd and its directors Hoshang Saba Saleh and Mohamed Vahid Golabin attended court having each pleaded guilty to eight offences under the Food Safety and Hygiene (Regulations 2013) on 5 April 2022. The court fined the company £139,000, a victim surcharge of £190. Directors Mr Golabian and Mr Hoshang Saba Saleh were each fined £8,900. Court costs totalling £9,461.40 were also applied.
“We have pledged to get tough on operators who break the law and take advantage of customers; and this fine sends out a strong message that we will take action where basic standards of health and safety are not being met, or worse still, flouted,” said Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, the council’s cabinet member for decent living incomes.
Cllr Mahfouz added: “Whilst we think that the fines were indeed appropriate for this level of offending, the council will not receive a penny of it. Instead, it will be claimed by central government, but we are campaigning for a change to these rules to enable local authorities to keep the money that is raised each year from fines and prosecutions that they initiate, which can then be used to support our town centres and businesses.”