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Magistrates decline to follow draft guidelies | Food Safety Lawer

York Magistrates declined to follow the new draft sentencing guidelines for Food Safety in dealing with one summons for failing to keep a factory clean and maintained in good condition. 

√جª¬øJeremy was recently instructed by Paul Mercer of Village Green Preserves, who had been prosecuted by York Environmental health in respect of two compliance visits to their premises at Millfield Industrial Estate, Whedrake, York in 2014. The summons related to alleged breaches of Annex II Chapter 1 Para 1 and Article 4 (2)of Regulation EC No 352/2004 and Reg 19 of the Food Safety and Hygene Regs 2013made under section 2(2) of the Eurpoean Communities Act 1972√جª¬ø.

An Environmental Inspector visited the premises in February and found various minor compliance failures, and gave the company 4 weeks to rectify the issues. When he returned in July he felt that further issues had arisen, but the company pleaded not guilty to these issues, and the York Council withdrew those allegations at Court on 29th April 2015.

Before the Magistrates, the Company explained how the breaches had occurred at a difficult time after the Christmas period, but that new procedures had been put in place to ensure future compliance. Although the Company had been under pressure due to the failure of a new high speed filling machine, the business was now on an even keel. 

√جª¬øThe Magistrates accepted the main mitigating features, which were that there was no risk of an adverse effect on human health as the foods were boiled, sealed and preserved before being stored in the company’s warehouse. The Company had no history of complaints and invited the Magistrates to visit the premises, to see the steps that had been taken to ensure future compliance.

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