Punjabi restaurant in London lauded for food hygiene

London, Aug 21 (IANS) A Punjabi restaurant here has been hailed for its food hygiene two weeks after it was fined for ignoring food safety laws, a media report said on Friday.

The Moti Mahal restaurant was fined more than 25,000 pounds ($39,000) earlier this month. It now boasts a food hygiene rating of four out of five, according to an inspection by the Food Standards’ Agency.

“I am very pleased to see our action had the desired effect and the business has now achieved a food hygiene rating of four,” London-based Ealing Times quoted councillor Julian Bell as saying.

Four consecutive inspections between 2013 and 2015 gave the restaurant zero or maximum one rating. A number of written warnings were served to the restaurant following the inspections.

In October 2014, the restaurant was temporarily closed after a rodent infestation left mouse droppings in contact with food.

Essence Restaurants Limited, trading as Moti Mahal, appeared a court in Ealing District of West London on August 6. The owner pleaded guilty to five food hygiene offences and was given the maximum fine of 5,000 pounds for each offence.

“This business displayed a disregard for its customers’ safety by ignoring warnings and advice from council officers,” Bell had said at the August 6 hearing.

“The level of this fine reflects the seriousness of the offences and should serve as a warning to all food businesses that we will take tough action if they fail to operate within the rules,” he noted.

On the same day, Ealing Magistrates’ Court also confirmed the council’s decisions to temporarily close two other Ealing businesses.

Earlier this month, an Indian-origin restaurateur in the Scottish city of Aberdeen, was fined 770 pounds ($1,200) for breaching food hygiene standards and failing to comply with the orders at the Aberdeen Sheriff Court.

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