Asda fined £664,000 over mouse infestation in Park Royal store
- Credit: Archant
Asda has been fined £664,000 following the discovery of a rodent infestation in its Park Royal store after a customer found mouse droppings in its bread rolls.
The customer had bitten into one of the rolls thinking they were seeds before realising what he was actually eating on.
He complained to environmental chiefs two days later who uncovered the infestation and the filthy conditions of the store’s bakery during an announced inspection.
Uxbridge Magistrates Court heard the bakery was forced to close for 10 days last September following the inspection which found mice droppings on bags of flour, food packaging and trolleys used for bread and shelving.
A frozen mouse was found at the entrance to a walk-in freezer and food packaging had been gnawed through by the rodents.
In addition, officers discovered a pet control company had visited the store at least 72 times in the previous year so Asda was aware of a serious rodent problem.
The rest of the store remained open while a clean-up operation was undertaken and the bakery is now deemed to be operating to a good standard.
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The company was fined last week after previously admitting four food safety and hygiene offences at Ealing Magistrates’ Court in September.
Asda was also ordered to pay £7,599 in costs to Ealing Council and £500 in compensation to the customer who bought the rolls plus a £120 victim surcharge.
Cllr Ranjit Dheer, Ealing Council’s cabinet member for community services and safety, said: “This is a great result for the council and I am very pleased that the court has recognised the seriousness of these offences and has imposed such a heavy fine.
“People expect the highest standard when they shop for food and put their faith known brands and Asda should know better.”