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Thatcham Szechuan Inn owner sentenced after ‘unsafe’ food causes ‘serious allergic reaction’





A Thatcham restaurant owner has been sentenced for food law breaches which caused a customer to experience a ‘serious allergic reaction.’

Wai Tak Wu was sentenced at Reading Magistrates’ Court on May 10 after pleading guilty to selling and placing ‘unsafe’ food on the market for people with peanut allergies at an earlier hearing on March 22.

A customer suffered a ‘serious allergic reaction’ at the Szechuan Inn, on Thatcham High Street, in December
A customer suffered a ‘serious allergic reaction’ at the Szechuan Inn, on Thatcham High Street, in December

Mr Tak Wu, who runs the Szechuan Inn on Thatcham High Street, was ordered to pay fines and costs amounting to £4,272, including a victim surcharge of £506 and a £2,500 contribution towards prosecution costs.

The magistrates had taken the guilty plea into account when setting the fines.

West Berkshire Council’s executive member for public protection, Lee Dillon, said: “Food allergies can present serious risks to health, and it is vital that customers can feel confident when ordering food in restaurants and other food outlets.

“It is vital that all food outlets highlight food allergens.

“Customer safety is a serious responsibility and this business fell short in this case.

“We always advise anyone who is eating out to check if any allergens may be present in their food.”

Szechuan Inn, located on Thatcham High Street
Szechuan Inn, located on Thatcham High Street

The offence occurred on or around December 10, when a customer was sold a red curry with vegetables containing peanuts, despite requesting their meal remain free from nuts — which led to a serious allergic reaction.

The matter was subsequently investigated by the Public Protection Partnership Shared Trading Standards Service, which deemed Mr Tak Wu’s conduct ran contrary to Regulation 19 (1) of The Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013 and to section 14 (1) of the Food Safety Act 1990.

Anyone with concerns about the sale of unsafe foods should contact Trading Standards on 01635 519930 or by e-mailing tsadvice@westberks.gov.uk



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