KENYA – A manager at Naivas supermarket chain was on Tuesday charged in a Nakuru court with offering for sale rotten poultry meat.
Stephen Karanja denied the charges when he appeared before Senior Resident Magistrate Judicaster Nthuku and was released on a Sh20,000 cash bail.
The court heard that the supermarket’s Nakuru branch displayed 27 pieces of rotten chicken meat for sale to customers on April 3.
Lawyer Francis Mwangi discounted the claims by the public health department, saying he read mischief since the affected poultry meat pieces were being kept in the return-to-supplier deep freezer awaiting collection by suppliers.
He urged the court to visit the supermarket and confirm the claim, saying the exhibit was not removed from the sale counters as claimed by the public health department.
Mr Karanja was arrested on Saturday after public health officers raided the retail store after customers complained about the meat.
He failed to produce documents showing the origin of the products. The manager was charged with selling products unfit for human consumption.
The public health department said that the move by the supermarket chain was aimed at increasing its sales while putting the lives of its consumers at the risk of contracting food poisoning.
Ms Nthuku allowed the public health department’s plea for the poultry meat pieces to be photographed for production as evidence while the exhibit is taken away for disposal.
Naivas is Kenya’s third biggest chain after Nakumatt and Tuskys. It is on an expansion trail that has seen overtake listed retailer Uchumi Supermarket.