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Inspectors Find Beetles in Ingredients, Roaches at Zomick’s

Inwood-based bakery plagued by pest problems since 2006, according to state health inspections.
Posted by Matthew Hogan (Editor), July 11, 2013 at 02:16 pm

Zomick’s Bakery is internationally known for its kosher breads, cakes and pastries, but you probably don’t know the Inwood-based warehouse has battled an unhealthy pest problem since opening in 2005, according to inspection records from the state’s Department of Agriculture and Markets.

In fact, Zomick’s, located at 85 Inip Drive in Inwood, has failed 10 of its last 17 inspections, all pest-related to some degree.

Inspectors have found vermin including cockroaches, beetles, mice and flies – even birds have been spotted flying around the facility on multiple occasions. All of these represent critical issues deemed health hazards by the state.

The good news is on Feb. 28, the facility passed inspection for the first time since July 2011. But prior to that, on Oct. 4, 2012, inspectors seized and destroyed 13, 50-pound bags of cornmeal that were infested with beetles.

Just three months before that, on July 10, 2012, nearly 100 live cockroaches were found in various areas of the facility. The inspectors noted “40-50 live cockroaches, adults and nymphs, were observed in and around the crevices of wheels on a work table in the cookie baking area.”

The beetle infestation also reared its head in the July 2012 inspection.

Rodents have also plagued the facility. In 2008, inspectors found “50-75 fresh and old intermingled rat droppings … observed in one corner of the receiving area. Signs of a rat’s nest were also observed in this corner.”

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Despite the fact that the failures outweigh the passing grades, according to a spokesman for the Department of Agriculture and Markets, proceedings to remove a license would require four or more consecutive failing inspections.

The closest Zomick’s has come to having its license removed was from May 18, 2006 to Dec. 20, 2006. The facility failed three consecutive inspections before passing on May 10, 2007.

Reasons for the three consecutive failures ranged from “live birds noted flying over the baking area” to bags of flour “ found to be rodent defiled with mouse droppings and gnaw marks.”

Zomick’s has passed two consecutive inspections on two occasions, but has never passed three consecutive inspections. The bakery will look to pass its second straight inspection in August when the Department of Agriculture and Markets is scheduled to return.
Multiple phone calls to Zomick’s were not returned.

This story was originally published on July 11 at 11 a.m