Baker wins bun fight

The owner of the Bulls Bakery has won his fight to keep his business open after a District Court judge overturned a council decision to not renew his registration.

The Bulls Bakery in the town's High St was ordered to close by the Rangitikei District Council in January.

Councillors voted to not to renew owner Sathya Sun's registration because of concerns about food safety standards at the bakery.

Council staff had identified several concerns at the bakery in the past 12 months, including offal from unlicensed sources, unwrapped pigs' heads being kept in a freezer, cooked and uncooked food being kept together in fridges, dead flies, mouldy meat and sick children playing with kitchen utensils.

But Sun appealed the decision, and had his case heard in the Whanganui District Court in April.

Judge David Cameron said in a decision released to the Manawatu Standard today that it was wrong for the council to not renew the registration.

The judge said Sun had a long history of being tardy with previous compliance notices.

But Sun had made all the improvements required before the council voted to not renew his certificate.

''The result is that the council appears to have been labouring under the misapprehension that work to remedy the defects was still incomplete as at 31 January, 2014,'' he said.

''Further, it is apparent that the council by that stage had become fed up with Mr Sun's previous non-compliance, and maintained a view that he was not sufficiently capable of running a compliant food business.

''The difficulty with that is at the very same time the council was requiring Mr Sun to improve the premises as to become compliant.''

The judge said Sun had been working to get up to scratch with the view that he could get a renewal.

''However, it would appear that the inspection was carried out after the resolution declining to renew, with the result that the council did not have that information before it when considering its decision.

''That is not the fault of Mr Sun.''

If the council had the up to date information before it, it would have been obliged to renew the certificate, the judge said.

The council's decision to not renew has been quashed, and they must issue Sun a certificate of registration until the end of next month. Both parties will pay their own costs for the appeal.

Manawatu Standard