Food business operators have a legal responsibility to respond to food incidents, for example by withdrawing or recalling food from sale or supply. A food incident may occur when food produced by a business does not meet food safety requirements.
Our Food and Safety Team is responsible for investigating the sale of food that may be contaminated or unsafe to eat and for checking on hygiene in food businesses.
If you have been sold food that you believe is unsafe or if you have witnessed unhygienic food preparation areas or practices you can report this to the Food and Safety Team to investigate.
The Food and Safety Team also investigates notifications of food poisoning and certain other specified diseases.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has developed a Principles for Preventing and Responding to Food Incidents guide to help food businesses prevent or deal efficiently with food incidents if they occur. The guide summarises current best practice and follows lessons learnt by all key stakeholders in the prevention and management of food incidents.
If you run a food business, please ensure that your documented food safety management system takes into account the advice given here and in the guide.
Food business operators are legally required to inform their local authority and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) if a food incident occurs and there is reason to believe that food is not compliant with food safety requirements.
If the food is also considered injurious to health, food business operators must report the incident immediately to the FSA.