Further meat cutting premises searched under warrant for food safety offences
This is the second time that emergency enforcement action has been taken for the same business operator.
Environmental Health Officers from Wiltshire Council's Food and Safety team have been in action to remove over 2 tonnes of fresh meat, including beef, lamb and goat meat from sale to the public.
They found the meat being cut and packed for delivery throughout the UK in a second hand car wash premises in Ludgershall.
The council's officers, working with a Food Standards Agency veterinary officer, searched the business at 23 Andover Road under warrant on 27 November and found whole and part carcases again being cut in poor conditions, which exposed this meat to the risk of contamination.
Officers had previously searched Devizes Hand Car Wash at 12 - 18 New Park Street on 23 October, where they witnessed fresh meat being cut in a vehicle workshop in grossly unhygienic conditions. Both car wash businesses and meat cutting activities were being carried on by the same business operator. Emergency enforcement action was taken in October to prohibit the activity in Devizes where 2.7 tonnes of meat was seized as unfit for human consumption and later condemned by Swindon Magistrates Court, who granted a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Order to prohibit the activity from continuing.
The business operator subsequently moved the activity to the second car wash site at Ludgershall, but had made no attempt to register that activity with the council or seek the necessary approval for it from the Food Standards Agency, despite a warning after the previous enforcement action. A further prohibition is in force on the meat cutting activity and the latest consignment of meat has also been condemned and destroyed.
Cllr Simon Jacobs, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Public Protection, said:
The conditions found at both these car wash sites have shocked our officers. They found that even the most basic requirements such as clean food rooms, a hot water supply, washing facilities, the control of pests and basic welfare facilities for food handlers were missing.
This business has put their customers at risk. The need for officers to have to act in this way, not once but twice, is an extremely serious matter and we are working very closely with the Food Standards Agency on further enforcement to safeguard the public.
The council's investigation into these activities are ongoing.