The franchisee of the Caerphilly branch of pizza chain Domino’s has been ordered to pay more than £16,000 by magistrates.
Dijla Ltd, which operates the pizza takeaway and delivery service from Piccadilly Square, was prosecuted by Caerphilly Council after a complaint from a customer.
Environmental health officers investigated after a piece of metal was found in a pizza bought in August last year.
An investigation was carried out at the store and several damaged pizza screens – which are used to cook the pizzas on – were found.
The investigating officer found the piece of metal was similar in appearance to the metal of the damaged screens. Tests later established that the metal found in the pizza came from one of the screens..
The council investigation found shortfalls in the company’s procedures and instances where procedures were not followed by staff.
At Newport Magistrates’ Court on Monday, December 2, Dijla Ltd admitted two food regulation breaches. These were selling food that was unsafe; and failing to maintain equipment.
The company, which is based in Cardiff, was ordered to pay a fine of £10,000, prosecution costs of £5,099, a surcharge of £120, and £1,000 compensation to the customer who bought the pizza.
Caerphilly County Borough Council said it had been working with the company and acknowledges that procedures had been revised and simplified to prevent future contamination.
Cllr Eluned Stenner, Caerphilly County Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection, said: “It is important that we investigate complaints and take the necessary action when required.
“It is also important to note that as an authority we undertake a lot of proactive work to support businesses to trade safely.”
A Domino’s spokesman said: “We’re very sorry about this incident. We have hundreds of pizza screens in-store and three or four were more worn than is acceptable. Our team members have received additional training and we’ve put in place extra checks to ensure this won’t happen again.”