UK store fined £2,000 after rotting mouse found among

A decomposing mouse was found sandwiched between packets of beans at a convenience store.

The owner of the Gurkha SP4 Mini Market in Brompton High Street, Gillingham, has been fined after the discovery.

Gurkha SP4 Mini Market in BromptonRodents had torn their way into packets of food, contaminating them and leaving their droppings all over the shop shelves.

Environmental Health Officers made an unannounced visit to the shop on August 23 last year and immediately shut the premises down.

They discovered a widespread infestation, poor cleanliness and a mouse corpse in between packets of mung beans.

Last week shop owner Mrs Prerna Rai appeared at Medway Magistrates’ Court.

She pleaded guilty to five charges in relation to a lack of cleaning and repair, inadequate procedures to control a mouse infestation, food which had been contaminated by mice, no running hot water at the hand wash sink and failure to put in place procedures to manage food safety.

Rai was fined £2,000 and ordered to pay £500 costs as well as a £40 victim surcharge.

But it’s natural; U.S. Marshals seize food products at Herb & Natural Food Co

U.S. Marshals have seized food products stored in a Fremont, Calif., company’s warehouse after inspectors from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration found widespread and active rodent infestation.

The FDA initiated the seizure of various food products in the warehouse owned by the San Francisco Herb &Natural Food Company on Aug. 21, 2012, under a warrant issued by the U.S. District Court for the Northern of California.

FDA inspectors found significant insanitary conditions throughout the warehouse during a recent inspection, in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. These conditions included the presence of live and dead rodents in and around food products, and apparent rodent nesting materials in food.

The seized held goods had been under an embargo by the State of California’s Department of Public Health. Those articles of food that were stored in metal and glass containers were exempt from the embargo and the seizure.

"The violations at San Francisco Herb & Natural Food Company, in Fremont, Calif. are widespread and significant," said Dara A. Corrigan, associate commissioner for regulatory affairs. "This prompted the FDA working together with its state partner, the State of California’s Department of Public Health to take these aggressive enforcement actions to protect the health of consumers.”


More rats: rodents close Pennsylvania state capital cafeteria

The cafeteria in the Pennsylvania capital building where the governor and other state legislators hang out, form cliques and toss around tater tots, has not been inspected in four years – despite a state law requiring annual checks — and is now closed after an infestation of rodents was discovered.

Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner said Thursday he received assurances in 2005 that the state Agriculture Department would inspect the facility, and his auditors later received false assurances that it was being inspected regularly.

Last week, Agriculture Department inspectors finally arrived at the ground-floor cafeteria, a popular coffee and lunch spot. They found a "severe" rodent infestation, including an "excessive" amount of rodent droppings on food preparation equipment and in cabinets, utensil bins and elsewhere. The droppings indicate the presence of live mice and are considered an imminent health risk.

The ground-floor cafeteria is now closed and is not expected to reopen until January.

“it’s not food poisoning, it’s likely norovirus.” Um, sometimes they are the same

According to the Dumfries & Galloway Standard (UK), a Dumfries hotel has temporarily shut after 20 patrons who ate there complained of illnesses.

Owner Aileen McGhie told the Standard she was not ordered to close the three-star hotel, and took the decision to do so herself in a bid to clean the premises from top to bottom.

She said: “A few people fell ill last week after being a guest or a diner at the hotel and we are still waiting for test results. I called environmental health myself and it is assumed it is an outbreak of the Norovirus. Rumours that it is food poisoning are completely false.

Um, Aileen, sometimes they are the same thing. While cruiseships and hospitals get a lot of press for norovirus, the majority of reported norovirus outbreaks are associated with foodservice settings or events, and have higher attack rates than other settings. While the difference between classical food poisoning might matter to you, many of the control measures are the same (reducing cross-contamination, good personal hygiene, doing a good job at cleaning up barf).

Owner Aiellen McGhie went on to say:

“Twenty people is not actually a high number considering the hundreds of people we had in the hotel that week.

It’s possible that one dish or food handler is implicated in — my guess is that not everyone ate everything on the menu. Foodborne illness cases are also consistently under reported and might contribute to the "low numbers".  And it probably doesn’t matter to the barfing customers.

Ontario grocer fined for mice in warehouse

The Toronto Star is reporting that the owners of Ontario’s second largest supermarket chain, A&P, have been fined $15,625 after pleading guilty in provincial offences court to a charge of failing to prevent a rodent infestation.

A City of Toronto health inspector laid the charge after finding the A&P warehouse in the west end was overrun with mice last fall.

The warehouse, which serves 250 Dominion, A&P and Food Basics stores in Ontario, was closed for two days in September while the problem was cleared up.