Essex poultry firm fined over pollution
An Essex-based poultry processing company has been fined £27,000 after a river became polluted with effluent.
Paul Flatman admitted breaching the Water Resources Act during a hearing before Harlow magistrates.
The court heard from Environment Agency inspectors that the company had received warnings over a two-year period about the levels of effluent going into the river, which was causing a serious pollution problem.
Prosecutor Claire Bentley told the court: “There appears to have been a lack of focus in the management of the site.”
In mitigation, it was said that the company did have a permit to discharge, but it was admitted that the levels had been exceeded. The company was fined £20,000 and was ordered to pay £7,700 costs.
After the hearing, an Environment Agency spokesman said : “Discharge consent permits are used to protect the environment. When the permit limits are not complied with, the aquatic environment is put at risk.”
In business for almost 50 years, Paul Flatman processes up to 90,000 birds a week and employs 40 staff.