A Birmingham man was ordered to pay £550 for misleading customers that meat sold at a Small Heath butcher’s was approved by the Halal Monitoring Committee (HMC), at Birmingham Crown Court today (16 April 2015).
Mohammed Naseer, 39, who owns New Kashmir Halal Meat, on Coventry Road, Small Heath, pleaded guilty to two offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 at an earlier hearing. He was fined £150 and ordered to pay £400 towards court costs.
Birmingham City Council brought the case after Trading Standards officers, who visited the store on 16 April 2013, saw posters bearing unauthorised HMC trademarks which suggested that the premises and the meat there was certified by the HMC.
Officers inspecting the premises found meat products from four suppliers which were not certified or licensed by the HMC.
Sajeela Naseer, Head of Trading Standards for Birmingham City Council, said: “Food fraud is a major concern that we take very seriously and, as in this case, we will take appropriate action – including prosecution – where any case warrants this.
“Consumers, particularly those who follow strict dietary guidelines in line with their religious beliefs, expect to food labelling to accurately reflect the provenance of their food.
“The presence of a HMC logo reassures consumers the meat they’re buying has been inspected and approved, so even though these products were halal, the posters were misleading consumers in to thinking the meat on sale were approved.”
New Kashmir Halal Meat was allowed to remain open to customers during this investigation.
Media contact: Emma Brady, Press and PR Officer, on 0121 303 6969 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors:
The HMC is a charitable organisation which certifies production of genuine halal food, and that food production processes comply with UK law as well as Islamic dietary compliance laws.
Please note: Although New Kashmir Halal Meat was not certified by the HMC, as far as Trading Standards are aware, the meat being sold there was Halal.