Their campaign began as a twitch of brown fur spotted from the corner of Borys Machnikowski’s eye — a tiny mouse, munching on a mini cheese roll inside a TTC eatery.

Machnikowksi, a 20-year-old Centennial College student, quickly snapped a photo and showed it to store employees at Bakery on the Go in the Warden subway station. But when workers failed to remove surrounding food and continued serving customers, he and his friends felt compelled to act.

“It’s a public health issue,” said Machnikowski. “There’s bound to be mice, but they (kept selling) baked goods to people knowingly and willingly. That’s what disgusts me most.”

Since their Saturday night rodent encounter, Machnikowski and his friends have done everything they can to “get the word out,” including contacting public health officials, alerting media outlets, and posting flyers to warn would-be bread buyers.

While they aren’t surprised a dining establishment could have mice — especially one inside a TTC station — the boys are shocked at how store employees handled their complaint.

Machnikowski says an employee “gave him a blank stare,” removed the tray of mini cheese rolls and continued selling bread from the same display case, without cleaning or disinfecting the area.

Store officials could not be reached for comment yesterday, and several employees refused to speak with reporters.

According to the bakery’s DineSafe history, the establishment received a conditional pass in August 2008 for two infractions and was given a full pass two days later.

But since its last inspection in December 2008, a work backlog from the summer’s labour strike meant the bakery has so far gone unchecked in 2009 — that is, until Machnikowski’s complaint prompted an investigation.

Yesterday, the bakery was given a conditional pass for five infractions.

Jim Chan, the city’s public food safety manager, says investigators found no indication of an “active infestation,” but old mouse droppings were found on the floor.