A restaurateur has admitted supplying curry containing peanuts in a curry which should not have had them.
Suab Uddin, who owns Black Peppers Indian Restaurant in Wrexham, supplied a lamb tikka korma which contained peanuts, contrary to the Food Safety Act 1990.
Wrexham Magistrates Court heard the case came to light as part of a Trading Standards survey of North Wales takeaways.
A Trading Standards officer ordered a lamb passanda over the phone from the restaurant on September 21 last year and asked the person taking the order if the product contained peanuts as his “friend” was allergic to them.
The person taking the order confirmed the product contained coconut, almonds and nuts, and when asked again if it contained peanuts, he made enquiries with the kitchen who said they would take out the peanuts.
On arrival at the takeaway, the officer collecting the order was offered a lamb tikka korma instead of the dish he ordered because the lamb passanda contained peanuts in the form of peanut butter.
The korma was submitted to the public analyst and was found to contain “the allergen peanut protein” at greater than 20mg/kg with almond less than 2.5mg/kg.
Uddin pleaded guilty to supplying a lamb tikka korma which contained peanuts, contrary to Section 14 of the Food Safety Act 1990.
He was fined £1,600 and told to pay a £160 statutory surcharge and £1,244 in costs.
A council spokesman said: “The Bench chairman said it was a serious offence and a life and death situation.
“The case brought by Wrexham Council’s Trading Standards service was part of a food sampling survey of takeaway foods to assess compliance with food information regulations.
“They require all food businesses to provide allergen information on foods including non-pre-packed food such as takeaways.
“The regulations were introduced to ensure that those who suffer severe allergic reactions to a range of allergens including peanuts are provided with comprehensive allergen information thus avoiding potentially life threatening allergic reactions.
Wrexham Council leader Mark Pritchard said: “Since the introduction of these regulations, Trading Standards officers in Wrexham have worked tirelessly with all local businesses to ensure food operators are aware of their obligations. This has included training and the provision of comprehensive advice.
“I’d like to thank staff for their excellent work on this case. Their commitment and diligence make them unsung heroes in pursuing compliance with food safety regulations which protect the general public.
“I am disappointed this business, despite being asked several times about the presence of peanuts in a takeaway meal, supplied a meal which contained peanuts.”
Cllr Pritchard added: “These regulations were brought in to address a very important health issue. The consequences of consuming foods containing substances you are allergic to can be very serious indeed and even fatal.
“I’m aware of a widely reported case in North Yorkshire, which resulted in the death of a man who had eaten a curry containing peanuts.
“The restaurant owner was convicted of manslaughter and is serving a lengthy prison sentence.”
Any food business operators who want advice on regulations governing food allergens are encouraged to call Trading Standards on 01978 298997.