Beetles and woodlice were discovered at an Aberdeen takeaway – one of six eateries urged to improve by inspectors.
Aberdeen City Council sends food hygiene monitors to firms and groups that serve meals and snacks to assess cleanliness and food safety.
Inspectors can award either a “pass” or a “requires improvement” rating.
The Evening Express used Freedom of Information laws to ask the council for reports for outlets inspected since March where inspectors judged that improvement was required.
One was De Ja Vu and Shakes N Screams, on Rose Street, which was inspected on March 5.
The shops – part of one company – were warned they had a “pest problem”.
The report said: “A significant number of dermestes beetles and woodlice were found in the back kitchen.
“I am told that such are seen on a regular basis and for some time.
“Dermestes beetles eat food debris, while woodlice eat rotting food and wood.
“Considering the poor state of repair and cleaning within this room, it is not surprising [the premises] have a pest problem.
“[The premises] are required to put in place procedures to control these pests.
“I strongly suggest you employ a pest controller and carry out the cleaning and repair as stated above.
“If you do not do so, this problem could develop into an infestation, at which point I will consider taking further action, which may include closure of your business.”
Inspectors said 13 items were found damaged or in a poor state of repair and 10 areas were found dirty.
The shop’s owner, Roy Duncan, said: “Immediately after the inspection, we called in a pest controller and that problem has now gone.
“All the other problems have been addressed.
“I have been running food businesses for 17 years and my standards have always been high.”
Inspectors also visited Italian eatery Mi Amore, on Huntly Street, on March 7 and said a “deep clean” was needed, with mould and rusty equipment found.
The report said: “A deep clean of the premises should be carried out covering all floor areas, walls, pieces of equipment and the ventilation canopy.
“The dry goods store should not be used for the storage of food until the black mold is removed and the cupboard thoroughly cleaned and painted.
“The microwave should not be used as it is badly rusted.”
A Mi Amore spokesman said the issues had now been dealt with.
“There were three concerns raised during this inspection and we dealt with each of them straight away,” he said.
“We cleaned the area the inspector had identified, we replaced the microwave and we cleaned the dry goods store.
“The council inspector returned shortly afterwards and found no concerns, except for some minor problems related to a fridge, which we discussed.
“We employ 14 staff and take food hygiene standards very seriously.
“It is good the council does these inspections to raise concerns and we are always willing to put right what they find.
“However, this is the first time we have had an inspection that has identified any issues.”
Another venue visited by inspectors was the Fittie Bar, on Wellington Street, on March 13.
The report said: “In the fridge there was a tub of skirlie, which was undated and I was told was made four days ago.
“There was also an opened container of cheese slices, with the opening date being unknown.
“Both items were voluntarily disposed of at the time of the inspection.
“There were also two unlabelled tubs of food within the upright freezer and pies stored here were also unlabelled with best-before dates.”
It added: “The sealant behind the sink to the right of the dishwasher is deteriorating, therefore making it difficult to keep clean. This should be repaired or replaced with a material which can be kept clean. The floor of the microwave was dirty.”
A spokeswoman for Fittie Bar said: “Although I find the inspections rewarding and that it helps maintains the standard required, I do feel sometimes as a small premises some logic needs to be applied.
“The building has been in existence since 1821 and every effort is made to keep the kitchen area modern and clean.
“Even more of an effort is made to ensure the storage of food and its preparation is maintained with the highest importance.”
Rishis Indian Aroma restaurant and takeaway, on George Street, was inspected on April 25.
“During the visit, hand contact surfaces such as equipment handles (fridges, freezer, microwave), door handles, light switches, yellow gas hob control knobs, the microwave door handle and control panel, the sink and its surrounding surfaces and taps, and the paper dispenser were dirty,” said the report.
A spokesman for the restaurant said: “We rectified all the issues raised right after the inspection and before a second inspection, which found no problems.”
Monitors also looked at Chopstix, at the Trinity Centre, on March 1.
Their report said: “Members of staff in the ground-floor servery area were witnessed to be not changing the disposable gloves as often as required, or not washing their hands.
“The floor of the walk-in chill had spillages of mixed vegetables and other food spillages and requires to be cleaned.”
The Evening Express contacted Chopstix. The company did not comment.
Inspectors visited the four-star DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel on February 8, on Beach Boulevard, and noticed staff were putting best-before stickers on food items – then putting new ones over the top to extend their shelf life. Coconut cheesecake also had mold on it.
A DoubleTree by Hilton spokesman said: “We expect to uphold the highest of standards when it comes to food preparation at our hotel.
“We have been working closely to fully address the matters raised in the report.
“As a result, we have adjusted our processes and conducted training sessions for our team members. The inspectors revisited us in March and have indicated they are satisfied with the measures we have taken.”
When inspectors returned on March 27 they noticed a “significant improvement” but still required improvement, as potato was seen to be out of date.
Inspectors also visited Aitkens Bakery, on Menzies Road, Torry, on March 5 and said in their report: “You must start recording the temperatures of food and of equipment critical to food safety.
“Skirting boards, wall-to-floor junctions and a pipe running above the skirting boards are in need of a deep clean as they have a build-up of dirt.”
The shop has since closed due to matters unconnected with the inspection.