HSE International

23 yoghurt brands recalled over rubber contamination safety scare

The yogurts are mostly sold under own-brand labels, and have been supplied to Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, The Co-op and Waitrose.

KFC in Pontypool fined £100,000 for food hygiene offences

The court heard that on 19 May 2015, a senior environmental health officer from Torfaen council visited KFC in Pontypool following a complaint alleging the premises had no hot water and there were numerous cleaning issues.

Inspections find NHS failing to comply with sharps laws

A sample of NHS organisations has found more than 80% to be breaching sharps regulations, according to the national watchdog for work-related health and safety.

Importance of applying creams in the workplace

Occupational skin diseases are the second most common work-related health problem in Europe.

Mouse droppings found shop dirty shelving health safety inspection Supermarket

Walsall supermarket fined over mouse droppings

Evidence of mouse droppings were discovered by health and safety officials during an inspection at A&S Supermarket Limited in June last year.

Deb gel glove

Unique Protective Cream Improves Health and Comfort for Glove-Wearers

The world’s first hand-health, under glove gel for occupational glove-wearers launched by Deb and Ansell.

North Warwickshire takeaway owner fined for hygiene offences

A North Warwickshare takeaway owner has been fined £33,208 after a catalogue of food hygiene horrors posed a “serious risk to public health and safety.”

On inspection, breaches in hygiene standards included uncovered containers of food, sauces left on the floor, a filthy sink and cloths and even traces of blood in the freezer.

No food safety procedures or food labelling systems were in place despite continuous advice from North Warwickshire Borough Council.

Salik Mohammed Miah, 42, of Regent Road, Handsworth, director of Maya Midlands Limited, pleaded guilty to eight food hygiene offences at Nuneaton Magistrates Court.

The council’s food safety officers had originally raised concerns about the restaurant following an inspection in August 2015.

“The court acknowledged that these food premises were a serious risk to public health and safety and they have had a poor record of compliance since the restaurant opened,” Assistant Chief Executive and solicitor to the council Steve Maxey said.

“Mr Miah narrowly escaped a £48,000 fine, which was only reduced because of his early guilty plea to the eight offences and the fact that a recent inspection revealed that the restaurant is now finally complying with the law.”

From February 1, magistrates now have the power to impose an unlimited fine and can also take into account the risk of harm to customers rather than just the offences.

This was North Warwickshire Borough Council’s first food hygiene prosecution since the increase in penalties.

Original Source: http://bit.ly/1SUb7Fz

Caffe Nero cleared of health and safety offences

The Putney branch of the Caffe Nero.

A Caffé Nero diner had to undergo surgery after an inch long wire bristle in a panini became lodged in her throat.

Cake shop worker Katherine Willans, 34, felt sick after eating the panini during a lunch break with her mum at a branch of the coffee shop chain in Putney High Street.

She then spent three days feeling ill with the wire stuck in her throat before going to hospital on August 3, 2014.

This Is Local London:

The wire that was lodged in Ms Willans’ throat. Pen lid for scale. Picture by SWNS.

But a judge at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court cleared the chain of four counts of breaching food hygiene regulations after hearing staff ignored strict training procedures and brought in the wire brush because they thought it was more efficient.

Wire brushes were also found in Caffé Nero branches in Clapham Junction, south London, and Boston, Lincolnshire.

A branch manager told the court she “didn’t think it was her duty” to prevent staff from using the brush.

After the verdict, Ms Willans, of Ashtead, Surrey, said: “One of my reasons for bringing this case was because I didn’t want an unpleasant experience like this happening to anyone else.

“Changing Caffé Nero’s procedures or protocols could help prevent that happening, but I feel that this verdict doesn’t necessarily mean that they will.

“The point of this case was to change policies so I could be confident this would never happen again. But that hasn’t happened”.

The court heard workers at the Putney branch had brought in the brush, which was even used by the store manager, at least a year before the incident.

During the three-day trial, a number of staff testified that they regularly used the brush despite knowing what they were doing was against procedure.

Mike Atkins, prosecuting, told the court: “This case is about what happens after the training, what happens to make sure that what the staff are trained in to do is in fact what they go on to do in practice.

“It is a matter of common experience staff don’t always do what you want them to do, staff don’t always follow instructions they are given.

“Employers are expected to think in advance about how and why staff might deviate from procedures set out”.

He said: “The brush was kept in a draw right next to a grill, no doubt because that was a convenient place to have it.

“It is right it was not on the counter or on display, but it was hardly very hidden away.”

He added: “The law demands high standards – especially from large companies serving large numbers of people – and Caffé Nero’s system, while good and well thought out, lacked that important aspect of validation and steps that could have helped to ensure procedures were being followed”.

He added that Caffé Nero could only say “that someone on the day had inexplicably failed to follow their training.

“The prosecution say that this is not good enough as an answer”.

Jonathan Goulding, for Caffé Nero, said: “Despite that training, a member of staff acted entirely contrary to it and the evidence again is overwhelming about that.

“The offences were down to the acts of fault of one of those members of staff.

“There is no doubt that the use of the wire brush was and must have been a deliberate breach of careful training given by Caffé Nero to their employees.

“This was a very regrettable thing that happened to Ms Williams but it doesn’t mean that Caffé Nero is criminally liable for it.”

District Judge James Henderson said: “It is easy to think of other steps that might have been taken, but it seems clear that this was indeed indoctrinated into employees during various stages of their training.

“In my view, Caffé Nero has made out the defence that they did indeed take all reasonable precautions and exercised all due diligence.”

A spokesman for Wandsworth Council, which brought the prosecution, said: “This was a very disappointing outcome and was in our view, contrary to the evidence presented to the court.

“At the end of the day an innocent Caffé Nero customer suffered a very serious injury that required surgery under general anaesthetic to put right.

“We felt this incident exposed serious shortcomings in the company’s procedures which is why we brought the case to court, but ultimately we must accept the judge’s verdict.”

Original Source: http://bit.ly/1qldhEO

RECALL: Aldi recalls branded biscuits due to possible pest contamination

The products, made by Baketime, have been withdrawn from Aldi on a precautionary basis. Photograph: Martin Godwin for the Guardian

Discount supermarket Aldi has recalled some branded biscuits and snacks due to possible “pest contamination”.

The products, made by Baketime, have been withdrawn from sale “on a precautionary basis” because of “potential unhygienic manufacturing conditions”, the recall notice says, adding: “These products are sold by Aldi, Asvina, Booker and LBV.”

Customers have been warned not to eat the products and advised to return them to their nearest store.

All batches of the products had been recalled “as they may have been subject to pest contamination”. Affected products include Aldi Cheese Thins, Aldi Cheese Bakes, Aldi Oddbites and Aldi Ginger Nuts.

A spokeswoman for Aldi said: “We have recalled a number of Aldi-branded products that have been manufactured by Baketime and have immediately suspended all orders with this supplier while we investigate this matter.

“Customers that have purchased the products listed in our public recall notices should return them to their nearest store where they will be offered a full refund.”

 

The affected products are:

Aldi Cheese Thins (10% Cheese) – L16026, L16027, L16055, L16056, L16057, L16073, L16074, L16075

Aldi Cheese Bakes – L16026, L16027, L16032, L16033, L16039, L16040, L16046, L16047, L16053, L16366, L16060, L16066, L16067, L16073

Aldi Oddbites Cheese – L16060

Aldi Oddbites Salt and Vinegar – L16061

Aldi Oddbites Smoky Bacon – L16061

Aldi Ginger Nuts – L16047, L16048, L16061, L16062, L16068, L16069

Bestway Mini All Butter Shortbread L16034

Bestway Mini Brownies L16035

Bestway Mini Cheese Thins L16032, L16033

Bestway Mini Choc Chip Cookies L16035

Happy Shopper Cheese Thins L16026, L16027, L16032, L16053, L16366, L16060, L16066

Happy Shopper Fudge Brownies L16041

Happy Shopper Choc Chip Cookies L16041​

LBV Potato Bakes Korma L16034

LBV Potato Bakes Mild Thai L16034

LBV Strawberry and Vanilla Biscotti L16027

 

Original Source: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/mar/30/aldi-recalls-branded-biscuits-due-to-possible-pest-contamination

Is Europe’s freshwater use sustainable?

Image © Alexander Goranov, Environment & Me /EEA

We need freshwater for human consumption and economic activities such as food production and industry, but does Europe manage this valuable resource in a sustainable way?

An indicator assessment published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) today on World Water Day takes a look at the use of freshwater resources across Europe.

The EEA indicator assessment ‘Use of freshwater resources‘ shows that while water is generally abundant in Europe, water scarcity and droughts continue to affect some regions, especially those that are densely populated and have high demands for water from agriculture and tourism during the summer.

The water exploitation index plus (WEI+) of European River Basin Districts is the percentage of total freshwater used compared to the renewable freshwater resources available. The EEA indicator shows that around 20 river basin districts, mainly in the Mediterranean, face structural water stress issues (WEI > 20 %). These include Cyprus, Malta, Crete, the Balearic Islands and Sicily. The situation is even worse in summer. The average WEI for the summers 2002-2012 were 81 % and 55 % for Cyprus and Segura, Spain respectively which suggests severe water stress and clearly unsustainable resource use.

Water stress, increasingly, occurs in other parts of Europe. The main drivers are growing urban populations and higher living standards coupled with reduced water availability due to pollution and drought. Many large cities have developed wide networks for transporting water, often over distances of more than 100-200 km to be able to respond to the demand for water.

We need freshwater for human consumption and economic activities such as food production and industry, but does Europe manage this valuable resource in a sustainable way? An indicator assessment published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) today on World Water Day takes a look at the use of freshwater resources across Europe.

Other key findings

  • During winter, approximately 30 million inhabitants live under water stress conditions, while the figure for summer is around 70 million. This corresponds to 6 % and 14 % of the total population of Europe respectively.
  • Agriculture accounts for 36 % of total water use on an annual scale. In summer, this increases to about 60 %. Agriculture in the Mediterranean region alone accounts for almost 75 % of total water used for agriculture in Europe.
  • Around 20 % of the total population of the Mediterranean region live under permanent water stress conditions. More than half (53 %) of the Mediterranean population is effected by water stress during the summer.
  • Public water supply is second to agriculture, accounting for 32 % of total water use.
  • The service sector, including businesses dealing with tourism, has become one of the main pressures on renewable water resources, accounting for 11 % of total annual water use. Small Mediterranean islands in particular are under severe water stress conditions due to receiving 10-15 times more tourists than they have local inhabitants.

About World Water Day

World Water Day focuses on the importance of freshwater and calls for its sustainable use. This day was first formally proposed during the Rio Summit in 1992. The United Nations (UN) General Assembly responded by designating 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day. Each year, UN-Water — the entity that coordinates the UN’s work on water and sanitation — sets a theme for World Water Day to highlight a current or future challenge.

Original Source: http://www.eea.europa.eu/highlights/world-water-day-is-europe