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Tragic case highlights importance of food safety systems

February 10th , 2022 by

The food poisoning case in Northamptonshire (as reported by Foodservice Equipment Journal) which resulted in the tragic death of one customer and 31 other diners falling ill, has highlighted that maintaining the highest possible food safety standards must be a priority for all operators.

The Head Chef at the Crewe Arms in Northamptonshire received a four-month jail sentence, suspended for 12 months, after admitting a charge of contravening food regulations. He was fined £9,000 and ordered to pay £1,000 court costs. His company was fined almost £3,000.

The court heard that Mr Croucher had incorrectly prepared a shepherd’s pie filled with mince for church-goers who were at the pub to enjoy a harvest festival supper. In summing up, the Judge explained: “Croucher was the chef that night. The mince was not cooked properly and was placed into a pan with iced water. Croucher needed to leave, so put the mince in cling film and put it in the fridge overnight. Having left it, he cooked it again and added warm mashed potato. He did not take the temperature when it was served.”

Whilst there is no excuse for not following food safety regulations, with many kitchens experiencing staff shortages and hence additional time pressures being placed on the kitchen team, mistakes can happen. The key factor for operators is ensuring that effective food safety systems and equipment is in place that will support staff and ensure that businesses remain compliant, specifically when inevitable human error occurs.

Had Mr Croucher had a simple solution like the MonikaPrime team management module installed, the smart PA system would automatically give him reminders when a hygiene or temperature probing task is due. Potentially this could have helped avoid the disastrous outcome in this case.

With over 30 years’ experience, Monika are the experts in connecting equipment and teams to ensure safe temperatures and working methods and we are here to help support your staff, protect your customers and your business’ reputation.

Keith Hopewell – Operations Director, Monika UK & Europe

For more information visit: www.Monika.com