Make a food safety complaint

We would like to hear from you if you have any complaints about food that you consider to be unsafe, unfit food or businesses or other food crimes

We give complaints priority based on their risk of harm. To ensure we understand the problem concerned we will want to contact you to discuss your complaint.

If you wish to make a complaint please complete the report food and occupational safety issues form. Make sure you have all the necessary information that you need such as dates, times and the nature of your complaint.

Report food and occupational safety issues

Please be aware that you will need to provide your name and other personal details for us to pursue your complaint. We cannot deal with anonymous complaints. However you can be reassured that we do not share your personal details without your consent.

What do we mean by 'unsafe' food?

Unsafe food is likely to cause food poisoning or serious injury. For example, food that you can eat straight from the pack without any further heating that is also past the Use By date, or food that contains hard sharp items such as glass.

We are unlikely to investigate some common problems with food. Please refer to our Food Safety Service Plan and Enforcement Policy.

We need to see any items causing your concern. We will accept photographs initially, but may ask to see the items directly. If you no longer have those item/s, we will note your allegation and consider it at the time of the next inspection.

What might we do with any items you give to us?

Our aim is to prevent a similar problem happening again. Once you give any items to us it is on the understanding that you give up ownership. If you later intend to use the items to gain compensation, we advise you to seek advice from a solicitor instead. We may forward any items you give to us, to others to help any further investigation that may prevent the problem happening again. Your details will however remain anonymous to the business involved unless otherwise agreed with you.

Should you contact a different Agency with your complaint if your allegation concerns:

  • food that is not as described, or expected
  • allergy information on or missing from labelling, menus or similar

Please direct your concern to Trading Standards.

What do we consider to be a 'unfit food business'?

If you think that a business is:

  • so dirty
  • how food is handled is so poor
  • that the situation may cause food poisoning or
  • harmful items to enter food

then you should report it. Please describe your concerns clearly, so that we can decide what to do next. We will also consider allegations concerning food crime such as illegal slaughter, items not intended for human consumption or intended to be waste entering the food chain.

Report food and occupational safety issues

Do we tell you what we find when we visit the business involved?

We do not usually tell you what we find but we will let you know if we intend to provide you with further information. We rate most food businesses and publish the rating as part of the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme. If after a visit we re-rate the business, based on what we find, the new rating will appear on the FHRS website for you to view. You can also check the Food Alerts website which is run by the Food Standards Agency. You may also request certain information from us in writing, by submitting a freedom of information request.