Sixteen products including own-label cheese thins, ginger nut biscuits and potato bakes produced by Baketime Ltd were recalled over fears they were manufactured in unhygienic conditions and may have been subject to pest contamination, according to the UK Food Standards Agency.
The Middlesbrough-based manufacturer has since issued a statement confirming pest activity on its premises – initially in January 2016.
‘Took immediate steps’
“The health and safety of our consumers is of upmost importance to us and therefore the company took immediate steps together with our reputable pest control company to manage the situation and eradicate it as quickly as possible,” said the statement.
Baketime added that a program of “intense pest control measures” resulted in the site being declared clear of pest activity within two weeks, and that the pest control contractor continued to visits the site frequently.
But in March, further evidence of pest activity was identified and another program of pest control measures implemented.
Routine site inspection
Later that month, following a routine site inspection by the environmental health officer of local authority Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council, the business voluntarily ceased production temporarily and recalled product manufactured between January 18 2016 and March 16 2016.
On March 23, the production area was declared cleared of pest activity and Baketime recommenced manufacturing.
“We continue to work closely with our local environmental health officer and pest control contractor to ensure that the issue has been properly eradicated and hygienic standards on site are upheld,” said the manufacturer.
‘No evidence of contamination’
“We have also implemented a comprehensive action plan to prevent a recurrence of the issue,” added the statement. “There has been no evidence of any contamination to any of our products produced, however in the interest of health and safety and on a purely precautionary basis a recall was announced on certain batch codes.”
“The company apologizes for any inconvenience this has caused.”