But we have training and audits: Dirty crates and vans used to deliver food by Asda

Assif Majid of BBC News writes that Watchdog’s reporter was given no training on keeping delivery crates and vans clean.

The reporter witnessed spillages, but was told by senior drivers that there was no need to clear it up during the delivery round.

Asda says it has a “clean as you go” policy and staff get full training.

Both Asda employees and customers have contacted the consumer programme with allegations about the cleanliness of the store’s delivery crates.

One driver told the programme: “There’s no cleaning process in place. The crates are used over and over again, even after spillages. Most, if not all, are dirty, from food, and things like smashed eggs.”

Another driver told the programme they are so concerned about poor hygiene, they are worried about their own family eating food from the crates.

Asda said the findings were “isolated examples and the opinion of individual colleagues”.

It added: “The findings do not reflect the extensive policies and training they have in place, which are supported by independent third party audits.”

The supermarket also says Watchdog’s researcher did not receive the full role-specific training because he didn’t do enough shifts.

Chartered environmental health practitioner Barrie Trevena said: “Even if the food you’re putting in is wrapped, the packages then become contaminated and then when the customer handles the cans and the packages, then that’s going to contaminate their worktop and fridge.”

The company said it delivered almost half a million orders each week, using their totes more than 2.5 million times, and it was inaccurate and misleading to suggest that it did not have policies or training in place at a business level.


Going public: Why did KFC let a TV crew inside its chicken operation?

BBC television, according to Bloomberg Business, is about to give viewers an in-depth look at how KFC raises, kills, and serves millions of chickens to its British customers every year.

kfc.chickenThe fast-food chain gave BBC journalists access to its operations for a three-part documentary, The Billion Dollar Chicken Shop, which starts airing tonight in prime time on the network’s flagship channel.

Was that smart?

British news outlets are already expressing dismay over a BBC trailer and photos that show thousands of chickens being raised in vast sheds on a poultry farm that supplies KFC. The chickens “walk around in their own excrement” before being slaughtered and chopped up, was the none-too-appetizing summary provided by the Daily Mail newspaper. The Independent quoted an animal-rights activist who called the conditions “wretched.” 

The trailer itself is pretty merry, with KFC staff appearing to enjoy the work and the camaraderie.

“At KFC, we are extremely proud of our culture and how we operate the business in the U.K. and Ireland,” including “robust internal quality standards,” a representative for KFC wrote. “When approached to take part in the documentary, we thought it was a rare opportunity to open our doors and share our behind-the-scenes story with the British public.”

The airing of the documentary dovetails with a push by KFC to update its menu and restaurant décor in Britain. KFC appears to be channeling Chipotle Mexican Grill, as it ditches its signature red-and-white plastic look for a trendy new interior design while introducing burritos this month.

UK child with E. coli infection dies

The BBC has just reported that a child from Devon has died after being infected with E. coli.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) has refused to release any details about the child, thought to be a toddler.

But the agency would say that no clear source for the infection has been found and that no other cases have been linked to the infection.

The HPA has also confirmed that it does not think the child’s death is connected to an outbreak which centred on a petting farm in Surrey.