Pret a Manger found not guilty of food safety offence

By Georgi Gyton

- Last updated on GMT

 Pret a Manger found not guilty of food safety offence

Related tags Pret a manger Allergen Multi-site

Pret A Manger has been found not guilty of a food allergy offence, dating back to 2017, in which Isobel Colnaghi suffered a severe allergic reaction from a sandwich containing sesame.

Colnaghi had checked the packaging on the curried chickpea and mango chutney item at the shop in Bath’s Southgate shopping centre and had asked a member of staff whether sesame was present in the sandwich as she had a known allergy.

The employee failed to check the store’s allergen guide, and instead allegedly checked a label on the fridge and told her, incorrectly, that sesame was not present in the sandwich. Food safety expert, Dr Belinda Stuart-Moonlight, told jurors that the employee – Roberto Rodriguez – was fully trained and had acted outside of Pret​’s allergen procedures, reported Sky News.

Last year, Bath and North East Somerset Council brought charges against Pret in relation to two historic incidents in Bath in 2017. The first related to the death of a customer Celia Marsh, whereby Pret was found not guilty on the charges related to this incident at a hearing last autumn, following the withdrawal of the charges by the prosecution.

The second related to the item sold to Colnaghi and was the focus of the trial at Bristol Crown Court, which concluded yesterday (5 May).

A spokesperson for Pret, said: “We welcome the court’s decision in relation to this incident in 2017. At Pret we continue to do everything we can to support customers with allergies and in 2019, we became the first food-to-go business to introduce full ingredient labels on all freshly made products.

“We remain 100% committed to the actions we set out in the Pret Allergy Plan, so that every customer has the information they need to make the right choice for them. We wish Ms Colnaghi all the best for the future.”

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