Waltham Forest Echo

Waltham Forest Echo

Businesses fined thousands over ‘disgusting’ lockdown hygiene

A Leyton food wholesaler was fined more than £10,000 in fines after Waltham Forest Council discovered dead mice decomposing in its kitchens Nisa’s Homemade [...]

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Cockroaches found behind the wallpaper of a restaurant on High Road, Leyton (WF Council)
By Waltham Forest Echo 25 September 2021

A Leyton food wholesaler was fined more than £10,000 in fines after Waltham Forest Council discovered dead mice decomposing in its kitchens

Nisa’s Homemade Recipes, based at the Leyton Business Centre in Etloe Road, supplies kebabs, spring rolls and samosas to restaurants and shops across London.

It was shut down for nine days after a routine inspection by the council’s food hygiene officers discovered a sticky trap with at least six dead mice, dozens of flies and evidence of rats.

The council’s deputy leader Clyde Loakes said some of the scenes discovered by the borough’s food hygiene officers during lockdown were “quite frankly disgusting”.

He said: “As a local authority we have always been vigilant, and we remained so during the pandemic. 

“The number of people ordering takeaways via apps soared during the lockdowns so customers often didn’t get to see the places where they were ordering from, which shows why it was so important that our officers couldn’t afford to let their guard down.

“Cutting back on cleaning and pest control may seem like an easy and quick way to save money but, in the long run, it will cost a firm dear. I hope they have learned a valuable lesson.”

Nisa’s, which boasts it has been “providing the highest quality Halal snacks since 1999”, did not appear in court for its flagrant breaches of hygiene laws until 9th August this year.

The company did not attend the hearing, held at Thames Magistrates’ Court, but handed two £5,000 fines and ordered to pay a £120 victim surcharge and £1,855.66 in costs by October 1.

Two other businesses, in Chingford and Leyton, were also recently taken to court by the council.

Bollywoods, in Old Church Road, Chingford, was fined £9,000, plus costs, after a rat infestation was discovered in its storeroom in February last year. 

Owner Monir Ali said the rats entered his business due to a manhole cover left open during building work next door.

Dera Original in High Road, Leyton, which has since changed its name to Popeyez Peri Peri, was fined £5,000 for uncleanliness and a lack of pest control.

Officers inspecting in May 2019 found a severe cockroach infestation behind the wallpaper in the serving area.

Waltham Forest has previously been accused of having the “worst food hygiene in London” by the Evening Standard.