Poor standard of hygiene in Tipperary restaurant 'posed a risk of contamination'

Anne O'Grady

Reporter:

Anne O'Grady

Tipperary pizza restaurant was the subject of a closure order

The floor of the potato chipping room was filthy and engrained with black dirt.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has today released the contents of a report which resulted in a temporary Closure Order being served under the EC (Official Control of Foodstuffs) Regulations, 2010 on a Tipperary restaurant during the month of October.

The New York Pizza (restaurant), Main Street, Ballina, Tipperary was the subject of the Closure Order under the Regulations.

The order was served on the 27th October and was then lifted on the 31st October. 

Listing their reasons today the Food Safety Authority of Ireland cited under Cleaning & Sanitation that:

  • Wooden shelf underneath the wash up sink was black with dirt.
  • Wall/floor junctions throughout service and back kitchen area were black with dirt.
  • Food debris and dirt were noted on the wooden boards supporting the 'fridge' and the small white freezer.
  • Ceiling tiles throughout the service and back kitchen areas were discoloured yellow and brown.
  • Black side door leading to back yard was dirty.
  • A wooden crate overflowing with paper cartons and other waste items were stored on the table beside open containers of spices.
  • Plastic containers storing cooking utensils/knives were encrusted with dirt.
  • Storage containers in use were in a dirty and damaged condition, namely the grey container storing uncooked chips and the white container storing flour for pizzas.
  • The small white fridge in the back kitchen was dirty throughout. Wet newspaper was stuck to the back of the fridge, shelving was dirty and a foul odour was evident.
  • The surface of the six ring hob of the oven was dirty.
  • Shelving storing kettles and other unused equipment was in a dirty condition. 
  • Shelving above the wash up area was sticky and dirty to touch.
  • The floor of the potato chipping room was filthy and engrained with black dirt.
  • Onion skins and loose food debris was noted on the floor underneath the pallets in the potato chipping room.
  • Large blue chip bins were worn and in a dirty condition in the potato chipping room
  • Walls, ceiling and the flyscreen in potato chipping room were heavily cobwebbed.
  • Light switches and door handles throughout the premises were dirty and sticky to touch.
  • The vent in the staff toilet was clogged with dust.
  • The poor standard of hygiene and cleanliness observed posed a risk of contamination to food prepared and stored on the premises.

In relation to the structure the report stated

  • Ceiling tiles throughout the premises were in a poor condition. Gaps were noted, a number were
    damaged and covered with brown tape.
  • The kick plate at the black side door was an untreated cracked concrete surface that was incapable of being effectively cleaned.
  • A number of cracked floor tiles were noted throughout the potato chipping room.
  • A number of wall tiles behind the flour storage area in the dry goods store were missing
  • The above non-compliances prevent effective cleaning and disinfection of these food preparation and storage areas and thereby pose a risk of contamination to food.

In relation to maintenance it said:

  • The shelving underneath the wash up sink in the back kitchen area was a wooden surface. Same
    was black with dirt and food debris and was storing cooking utensils.
  • The chipboard structures which the fridge and the small white freezer were stored on were
    chipped and dirty. 
  • A wooden block and piece of newspaper was wedged in front of the pizza oven door to hold it shut.
  • The door on fuse board would not close, the area inside same was full of aprons and clutter.
  • Miscellaneous non-food items such as broken cooking equipment, a hammer, screwdrivers, a pliers and air freshener were present and stored adjacent to foodstuffs in the kitchen.


The above non-compliances prevent effective cleaning and disinfection of these surfaces and thereby pose a risk of contamination to food.

Dealing with equipment the report said:

  • The ventilation system was not turned on at the time of inspection. Dripping grease was running
    down the outside of the canopy. Ceiling tiles throughout the service and back kitchen area were
    discoloured yellow/brown.
  • Adequate lighting was not provided in the service area and back kitchen area.
  • The light in the hallway off the potato chipping room was not working.
  • A mixer for making pizza dough was stored directly on the floor in the hallway off the potato
    chipping room.
  • The wire basket storing uncooked chips was defective as it was broken with metal protruding from same.
  • The wire baskets used to fry chips were damaged with metal protruding.

Defective equipment poses a risk of contamination to foodstuffs as adequate cleaning could not be carried out.

Finally dealing with services the report noted:

  • Hot water was not available throughout the food premises.
  • The ventilation in the staff toilet was not working during the inspection.
  • There was no cold running water at the wash hand basin in the staff toilet.
  • There were no hand drying facilities at the wash hand basin in the staff toilet.