Butcher’s shop in Tooting faces legal action over “extensive” mouse infestation
Published: Friday 17th November 17
A butchers shop in Tooting is facing the prospect of legal action after being forced to close for the second time in three months after it was found to be riddled with mice.
Bilal Halal Meat in Upper Tooting Road was shut down by council food safety inspectors after they found a serious mouse infestation and filthy food storage and preparation areas.
The inspectors found mouse droppings on shelves plus rodent droppings and urine stains on bags of rice.
A dead mouse found on a food shelf
The floor and chest freezer in the rear storeroom were covered in blood and the meat mincing machine was encrusted with food debris.
Fearing an imminent risk to public health the inspectors ordered staff to close the shop immediately – before obtaining a court order the next day at Wimbledon magistrates court which ordered the owners to keep their doors closed to customers until emergency remedial works had been completed.
Following a deep clean and appropriate pest-control measures being put in place the shop was permitted to re-open but the council is now actively considering whether or not to take further legal action against the business and its owners.
The business was previously closed in August for similar reasons but was allowed to re-open after the imminent risk to public health was removed.
The council’s consumer protection spokesman Cllr Jonathan Cook said: “All food businesses in Wandsworth need to pay full and proper regard to hygiene levels in their shops. This is especially true of high risk premises like butcher’s shops.
“Those that imperil the health of their customers face stringent legal action and the prospect of heavy fines and court costs, never mind all the bad publicity these types of cases inevitably generate.”