Inspectors closed down a Leicester cafe immediately after they discover a decaying mouse and faeces in the oven. Leicester City Council’s environmental health officers, Liz Johnson and Claire Douglas, unearthed the revolting mess at the Vachhraj Cafe and Bar in Uppingham Road after they turned up to carry out a routine inspection.
Rat and mouse poo was found next to a plate of defrosting meat, on food preparation surfaces, around cooking utensils and even in an oven. A dead and decaying mouse was also discovered behind a sink in the food preparation room of the cafe, which the inspectors described as ‘very dirty’ in their report.
Mice can spread diseases including salmonella and listeria through their urine and faeces and the bacteria can be transferred to their feet and bodies and can be spread widely as a result. Co-owner Arjun Modhwadia was told the council would be applying to Leicester Magistrates’ Court for permission to keep the premises shut until the rodent problem was solved.
In the inspection report, Ms Johnson wrote: “Almost immediately I noted that there were mouse droppings on the lower shelf of the preparation table, amongst tins of ghee and next to a mayonnaise bucket and on the lid to this bucket.
“I also noted a dropping on top of a wooden cupboard kept here in which bread rolls were stored. [There were] a small number of droppings to the side of the microwave. Next to the microwave was an open container of coriander and a metal tray that food was served into.
“As I continued to look in detail found mouse droppings on other surfaces in the kitchen; on a stainless-steel table next to the tandoor oven and on the lower shelf of the table used to store open spices. A dirty frying pan had been left on the floor with the remains of some food cooked food in it together with a number of other frying pans, left on top of dirty cardboard.
“There were mouse droppings on this cardboard and around these pans. I opened the oven below the hob and noted that a frying pan had been left in there full of oil.
“When I moved this could see that there were droppings inside the oven as well. Claire opened a drawer and pointed out to me that there was a mouse dropping inside this, next to a rolling pin.”
Ms Johnson then uncovered further hygiene horrors in the food preparation area. She wrote: “Opposite the sink I noticed a waste bin, three quarters full of food debris with no lid on this, so an easy food source for rodents.
“I moved this bin and noticed a mix of mouse droppings and food debris under this. On a lower shelf under the sink was some meat defrosting on a plate.
“Next to the pate was a mouse dropping. Behind the sink in a corner I noted there was a dead and decaying mouse.
“There were large numbers of droppings around low level shelving on which a sack of potatoes and a box of onions was stored, in which droppings were mixed with onion skins in the base. This area smelt very strongly of mouse urine.”
Read More: Decaying mouse found at Leicester cafe