Fine after beetles found in Chinese restaurant

The manager of a Chinese restaurant has been fined £1,500 after pleading guilty to a food hygiene offence.

Hahn Pham who runs Saigon Saigon in St Andrew Square pled guilty at Edinburgh Sheriff Court yesterday (09 January).

Environmental Health Officers visited the restaurant to carry out a routine inspection in November 2011 where they found:

  • Dermestes beetles throughout the premises 
  • raw meat stored next to ready to eat food and raw meat left lying outwith temperature control next to cleaning products on a dirty floor with Dermestes beetles crawling nearby

The premises was closed for three days following the visit after being served with a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice.

Mr Pham pled guilty to a charge of failing to prevent cross contamination of food from raw meat and Dermestes beetles. Not guilty pleas to two other charges were accepted by the court.

Councillor Lesley Hinds, Environment Convener, said: "This court case should send a strong message to all food business operators in the city that we will not hesitate to take action in order to safeguard the health and wellbeing of Edinburgh's residents and visitors.

"They are entitled to expect the highest standards of food hygiene when they eat in the city and it's important for them to have confidence that they can eat out safely.

"This sends a clear message to all food business operators that they must adhere to food hygiene requirements or face the legal consequences."

The full charge is listed below:

On 1 November 2011 at Saigon Saigon, 14 South St Andrew Street, Edinburgh, EH2 2AZ, you Mr Hahn Pham (Manager) did fail to ensure the requirements set out in Article 4 Paragraph 2 Annex II Chapter IX Paragraph 3 of Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004 were complied with in that you did fail to ensure that food was protected against contamination likely to render the food unfit for human consumption, injurious to health or contaminated in such a way that it would be unreasonable to expect it to be consumed in that state in that ready to eat  foodstuffs were stored immediately next to the raw meat preparation area, exposing ready to eat products to splashing etc from the preparation of the raw chicken. Raw meat was stored next to ready to eat foodstuffs in both walk in refrigerator and the basement walk in freezer. Raw meat was also left lying for a period of time outwith temperature control next to cleaning products on a dirty floor with Dermestes beetle crawling nearby contrary to the Food Hygiene (Scotland) Regulation 2006, Regulation 17(1).

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