Fast food chicken chain Nando's has apologised after two Auckland outlets were given a D or E food grade by Auckland Council.
Nando's West City was rated E and Nando's Lincoln Road D after inspections in 2017. While both restaurants have since reclaimed their A-grade, Nando's says it had "taken our eye off our priority focus of providing an A-grade food safety environment".
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Auckland Council closed the West City Waitakere branch after a pest control inspection on October 10.
"An Auckland Council inspection conducted in early October 2017 detected cockroaches were present in a wooden benchtop at Nando's West City," Nando's told Newshub.
"Nando's ceased trading immediately and engaged a builder to replace the benchtop and a pest control company to undertake preventative treatment to the restaurant."
And in early December 2017 the Auckland Council gave Nando's Lincoln Road a D-grade.
"The visit highlighted training and supervision improvements were required, along with some administration processes regarding the FCP [food control plan]," Nando's says.
"Nando's immediately rectified this by providing additional training for both the restaurant manager and team and again, our A-grade status has been reinstated."
There have been problems with Nando's outlets in Australia too.
Two Nando's outlets in Perth were convicted and fined in 2017 for non-compliance with health standards.
One store was "critically non-compliant" with health standards.
"Rat activity complaint. Extremely high rodent activity present. Cleaning and adequate pest control required," the inspector's audit found.
Another restaurant inspection found cleanliness was "below required standards".
The "overall standard of cleaning, including floors, walls and fixtures, must improve," the inspector's report states.
Nando's New Zealand says it's "not proud" of receiving the Auckland Council's grades and has implemented changes to ensure food safety.
"The Nando's New Zealand business has recently been through a period of significant change including structural support, restaurant development and new menu introductions," general manager Garth Parker told Newshub.
"While these regrading incidents have not put our customers at risk, we are certainly not proud of this lapse and in both cases we immediately rectified any concerns raised by Council.
"Nando's places highest importance on food safety and restaurant hygiene.
"This is once again a priority focus for us, ensuring our staff understand and are following these processes. As a result, Nando's West City and Lincoln Road have both re-joined the rest of our 14 Auckland based restaurants in their A-grade rating."