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Pigs' Ears Pong Raises Stink In Foleshill


A Coventry firm has been allowed to bake pigs’ ears to turn them into dog chews – despite its neighbours raising a stink about the smell.

Coventry City Council decided that TJ Lindsay in Stoney Stanton Road should be given permission to make the chews, subject to strict controls designed to stop the smell escaping.

The firm currently runs a boning business taking meat off pigs’ heads.

Around 35 tonnes of pigs’ heads are brought to the factory every week, with around a third of this becoming meat.

Nine tonnes of bone is disposed of, and company boss Terry Lindsay decided to do something with the remaining carcasses to save having to pay to throw it away.

With the green light from officers at the Ministry of Agriculture in January, the baking of the ears and noses to turn them into dog chews started.

But residents soon kicked up a stink about the terrible smell, and workers at a nearby factory, H Burbidge and Sons, also complained to the city council.

It then became apparent that the Ministry had issued the wrong advice, and city council permission was required to operate the process.

While the technicalities were being sorted out, and without any controls being imposed to restrict the amount of air pollution, the baking continued.

In an effort to reduce the smell, the factory raised the height of its chimney, and stopped baking noses, which take twice as long to dry out.

But residents of a 16-storey block of flats across the road said they were still affected by the pong.

Colin Young of the Falkener House Tenants’ Association said people living in bed-sits were being forced to stay indoors with their windows closed.

He told members of the council’s Licensing Committee:

“It also affects the park nearby, which is about the only open space in Foleshill.”

He said that there was a lack of confidence that the company would follow any conditions imposed.

Tim Foreman, works manager of H Burbidge and Son, said the smell had permeated storage areas and places where his staff had to work, as well as the canteen.

He said:

“We’ve had people almost be sick because of the smell, and they certainly can’t eat there.”

After questioning, Mr Foreman said that the situation had improved since the chimney had been lengthened.

Steven Edmonds, representing the firm, said it had a good record of working in the area for 20 years.

He added that once the conditions from the city council were made clear, the firm would work hard to achieve them.

He said that five jobs rested directly on the permission being granted, but all 22 employees risked losing their jobs because of the narrow profit margin the company was currently working under.

Granting the permission, Cllr Eric Linton said conditions would be formulated by the council’s environmental health team, and added:

“We feel it is important that you work with the residents from time to time to see if they are suffering any difficulties with the smell.”

The committee ordered another report in six months time to check the progress of the plant.

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CWN / Politics / Coventry City Council / 8 Aug 00

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM