Tesco customer 'saw rat in store'

A COURT has heard from customers who saw evidence of rodents in a Tesco supermarket.

Anthony Bond

A COURT has heard from customers who saw evidence of rodents in a Tesco supermarket.

Denise Goldsmith said that on carrying out her weekly shop at the Tesco Extra Martlesham Heath store in April 2007, she saw a rat scurrying underneath shelving containing pre-packed cold meats.

“I came into the aisle and saw a rat come out of one side of the aisle and go across and scurry into the flexible skirting in the bottom,” she said, before adding: “It was big and rat-like.”

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The court also heard from Amanda Shave who visited the store in June 2007. She described how she was looking at packets of multi-pack crisps and found about 25 mice droppings and also noticed that five or six crisp packets had been chewed in the corners.

Jane Ruffle, a technical officer with Suffolk Coastal District Council environmental health at the time, who worked in the food safety team, told the court of a large build up of mouse droppings near where produce for the in-store bakery was kept.

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She said: “My main concern was the sheer number of droppings which either indicated a poor standard of cleaning in that area or a large number of mice.”

Suffolk Coastal District Council has brought eight charges against the food giant, which include having inadequate environmental health procedures in place to deal with rodents and failing to “pest proof” the building.

Tesco denies the charges, which relate to incidents between April 30 and August 15, 2007.

The trial continues.

Tesco store 'infested with vermin'Tesco store 'infested with vermin'

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