Shop sold rotting fruit and veg

Rotten guava found during HMI investigation.
Rotten guava found during HMI investigation.

The owners of a Batley shop have been fined for selling rotten, damaged and incorrectly labelled fruit and vegetables.

Abdullah Dadipatel, 36, and Hawa Dadipatel, 35, of A and Z Dadipatel, based in Banks Street, admitted eight charges when they appeared at Wakefield Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday December 2.

The charges related to offences found on May 12 and June 5 this year during an investigation carried out by the Horticultural Marketing Inspectorate (HMI), part of the Rural Payments Agency.

In May, inspectors found rotting cauliflowers, severely bruised strawberries and labelling defect on courgettes, turnips, spring onions, spinach, Galia melons, oranges, Royal Gala apples and Packham’s Triumph pears. The following month inspectors found spinach, spring onions, saragwo, guava, Fuji apples, peaches, Conference pears and lettuce which were all affected by rot.

They also found bruised loquats and labelling defects on apples and nectarines. The pair were each ordered to pay a £1,000 fine, £500 costs and a £100 victims surcharge.

HMI operations director Paul Caldwell said: “We see prosecution as a last resort and always try to gain compliance through advice guidance and instruction.

This particular store received four visits from inspectors between April 2013 and March 2014 where advice on compliance was offered. Poor quality produce was found on two of these occasions and inadequate labelling on every visit.