> Service Station Fined £21,000 for Food Safety Offences - The Food Safety Company Service Station Fined £21,000 for Food Safety Offences - The Food Safety Company
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    Wednesday, 4 January 2017

    Service Station Fined £21,000 for Food Safety Offences

    Stevenage Magistrates Court has ordered the TGFC-owned Francesca outlet at Baldock Services to pay £21,174 for five separate food safety violations, as well as NHDC’s costs and victim surcharge.

    Img source: Flickr
    According to The Comet newspaper, the food vendor, which was located on the A1 motorway before it ceased trading in 2016, faced charges bought by North Hertfordshire District Council which included failure to protect food from contamination and failure to produce company safe working practices. The business reportedly also ‘failed to register with the North Hertfordshire District Council's (NHDC) environmental health team,’ and was consequently reprimanded.

    Speaking to reporters last month, Councillor Bernard Lovewell, executive member of housing and environmental health, claimed that ‘everyone who opens a food business must register it with their local authority. They must inform the inspection body that they are trading.’

    As the Francesca outlet failed to do so, they ‘were consequently convicted for things that could have been easily rectified.’  

    The company itself did not provide a legal defence or attend the court hearing, which took place on 16 December 2016.

    As the Comet notes, ‘it was fined £4,000 for each of the five offences, ordered to pay NHDC’s costs of £1,594 and £120 victim surcharge.’

    Whereas mobile food vendors are generally used to encountering authorities which often presume guilt with regards their licensing and food safety practices, and have been discussed before on this blog in terms of both, it’s less common to encounter such issues in relation to static food outlets like Francesca.

    Still, it’s clear that some can indeed slip through the net. For a while, at least. 

    James Stannard

    James has a Bachelor’s degree in History and wrote his dissertation on beef and protest. His heroes list ranges from Adele to Noam Chomsky: inspirations he’ll be invoking next year when he begins a Master’s degree in London.
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