A DEAD mouse was discovered by environmental health inspectors at a popular pizza takeaway. Square Pan Pizza in Spring Bank, Hull, was heavily criticised by inspectors for its food hygiene.
Mouse droppings were discovered in several areas, while raw meat was found stored next to salads, sauces and cooked food.
The owners also failed to store the food at a suitable temperature and there was even mould found growing on a tub of tomato sauce.
The takeaway was given a grade of zero – meaning urgent improvement is required – as part of the national rating scheme.
Environmental health chiefs have expressed concerns that takeaways in the city are still failing to meet safety standards.
Out of the 22 outlets in the city to receive a zero rating, about half are takeaways.
Paul Turner, principal environmental health officer for Hull City Council, said: “Takeaways remain a perennial problem. They are often in the smallest premises, with a low turnover.
“The recession has also had an effect. We have never had so many takeaways and they are competing for fewer customers.
“Many are housed in old buildings, which are more susceptible to mouse infestations.”
Square Pan Pizza was visited in July and the takeaway closed for a couple of days to carry out improvements.
Mr Turner said: “The owners have responded very well and we visited again recently and there were big improvements.”
Khan Wali, manager of Square Pan Pizza, insists lessons have been learnt.
He said: “Inspectors came about two weeks ago and everything was checked.
“Everything has improved and they told us it was very good.
“The main problem was that we had a burglary and the food hygiene diary was taken.
“We have now a new system in place and we have improved our training for staff.
“We quickly dealt with the mouse infestation and we have taken everything onboard.”
Despite being on the wrong end of a zero rating, Mr Wali has backed the food hygiene scheme.
He said: “It is a good thing. It is very much in the public interest and it makes sure everyone is properly assessed.
“We had some problems and, with the council’s help, we have dealt with them.”
Retail outlet BK Kubus, in Spring Bank, has also been handed a zero rating following an inspection in July.
The outlet had food past its sell-by date and items were not stored at the right temperature.
There was also no hot water and parts of the building were in disrepair.
In total, there are 1,731 food outlets assessed under the scheme.
A total of 700 have received the top score of five (very good), 411 received a score of four (good), 347 were given a score of three (generally satisfactory), 119, received a two (improvement necessary), 132 were handed a one (major improvement necessary) and 22 received a zero
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