The Griffin in Isleham, Cambridge, was found to have breached multiple serious health and safety rules.
Unfit for purpose
An inspection of the pub revealed out-of-date food on the premises, including putrefied cucumber in salad and mouldy grated cheese.
There was also evidence of limited pest-control within the premises and a number of dirty appliances that were unhygienic.
The Missings family, who have owned the pub since 2008, pleaded guilty to seven offences before Cambridge magistrates and were fined £5,500.
They were previously cautioned in 2013 and attended a half-day training course at the council in 2017 to improve their practices and hygiene rating.
But miraculously, the family have turned it around and have since been given a four-star hygiene rating by council health inspectors – just one short of the highest.
The turnaround – reflected on the website of East Cambridgeshire District Council – rates the couple’s Isleham pub as ‘good’ for food safety and hygiene, ‘good’ for structural compliance but only ‘some’ for confidence in management.
Councillor Carrol Sennit, service delivery champion for environmental services, hailed the pub's astonishing turnaround and reiterated the importance of good hygiene.
“We work very hard with businesses in the area to try to ensure they keep up food safety standards.
“For the protection of the public, we had to take legal action against the establishment in question.
“All food establishments must comply with food laws or be prepared to face the consequences.”
Guilty as sin
The seven offences to which the couple pleaded guilty were:
• Placing food on the market that is unfit for human consumption through putrefaction, deterioration and decay
• Placing food on the market that is unsafe in that foods that were beyond use-by dates
• Failure to put in place, implement and maintain a permanent procedure or procedures based on the HACCP (hazard analysis and critical control point) principles, including establishing critical limits at critical control points which separate acceptability from unacceptability for the prevention, elimination or reduction of identified hazards including ensuring you have safe food and safe systems of stock rotation
• Failure to ensure that all equipment with which food comes into contact is effectively cleaned and where necessary, disinfected
• Failure to ensure the construction of food premises permits good food-hygiene practices, including protection against contamination and, in particular, pest control
• Failure to keep food premises clean
• Failure to ensure that food handlers are supervised and instructed and/or trained in food-hygiene matters commensurate with their work activity.