THE OWNER of a Coventry Costcutter and his company have been fined more than £26,000 for selling food up to 10 days past its use by date.
Mohammed Shazad, aged 45, and Fargo Retail Limited trading as Costcutter, Far Gosford Street, were sentenced at Coventry Magistrates Court on February 20 for selling ‘unsafe food’.
Coventry City Council’s Trading Standards team visited Costcutter in response to a complaint from a member of the public.
On inspection they found various food items past their use by date in a fridge.
The food included sausages, yoghurt, cooked ham and chicken and bacon wraps.
A council spokesperson said: “Trading Standards then conducted an investigation which resulted in Fargo Retail Limited and Mr Shazad being offered a caution. But Shazad declined the caution, so the matter proceeded to court.”
Mr Shazad and his company each entered six guilty pleas.
Fargo Retail Limited was fined a total of £14,400 and ordered to pay costs of £1,204, along with a victim surcharge of £170.
Mohammed Shazad as director was fined a total of £10,400 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £170.
Chair of the Licensing and Regulatory Committee Councillor Christine Thomas said: “We take a balanced approach to enforcement and that is why a caution was offered, in the first instance.
“I suspect that Mr Shazad and his company now regret not accepting it, as it resulted in the matter proceeding to court and he and his business now have to pay a total of £26,344.
“Food past its use by date is a serious matter and the courts have sent out a strong message to expect a substantial fine.”
To report the selling of food past its use by date, please call trading standards on 03454 040 506 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org