Food Inspections and Sampling
We carry out regular checks on all food premises to ensure the public are protected and that high standards are maintained. Inspections take place without prior warning and higher risk premises are visited more frequently than lower risk premises.
During the inspection officers will want to be satisfied that adequate controls are in place to prevent any problems, ensure staff are adequately trained and the condition and cleanliness of the premises meets required standards.
Scores are awarded for food hygiene compliance, structural compliance and confidence in management; premises are not rated against the quality of the food they produce.
Guide to inspections - Food law inspections and your business, Food Standards Agency
We sample to identify potential problems with specific types of food or types of food businesses as part of national or regional studies;
- investigate food poisoning outbreaks and food contamination incidents
- investigate complaints
- assess food suspected of being sub-standard
- reassure the public about food safety
- deliver a more effective food inspection service.
When will a food sample be taken?
Food samples are usually taken in the following situations:
- As part of routine food hygiene inspections to aid assessment of food safety management
- Investigation of complaints
Food & Safety Team