Food Law Interventions

We implement a planned programme of risk based food law interventions

Protective Services has a legal duty to carry out Food Law Interventions, including inspections, at food businesses within North Lanarkshire to ensure that they are complying with national food law which set out rules and standards to keep food safe.

Interventions will look at the safety of how the food is handled, prepared, stored and sold, and will also look at whether the information provided about the food on labels, menus etc. is accurate and that ingredients are used which are safe.

Interventions will be carried out without any notification. This is to make sure that officers can look at how the business operates under normal conditions. However, the purpose of an inspection is not to find problems, or catch people out. The purpose of an inspection is to make sure that a business is operating safely and is able to show it can do this every day it is operating. 

Officers will take action against a business if there is a risk to public health. In most cases business operators and staff work hard to keep food safe, and officers will provide guidance to ensure any issues requiring attention are dealt with.

After every programmed intervention a score will be given to the business depending on how well it is complying with food law. The higher the score the more often the business will be inspected. The highest scoring businesses will be inspected every 1 month, and the lowest scoring every 3 years. 

This is a national scoring scheme used by all local authorities in Scotland. However, if there are serious problems which need to be fixed then officers will carry out revisits as required, and take formal action against the business to ensure standards are improved. Serious concerns are not ignored. The inspection score can go up or down following inspection depending on the level of compliance found.

At the end of every inspection the food business will be issued with a report of the issues discussed and any matters they need to fix.

If more serious action is required then officers have the power to serve various types of notices to improve standards, stop the business operating, seize and take for destruction any food felt to be a danger, and also report matters the Procurator Fiscal for prosecution. Action will be taken in accordance with the Enforcement Policy.

The service is subjected to regular audits by Food Standards Scotland. The audits cover the application of enforcement powers within a broad framework agreed between the agency and local authorities.

North Lanarkshire Council also participates in the Food Hygiene Information Scheme (FHIS). We award premises a rating of pass or improvement required following planned interventions and record these together with inspection reports on the FHIS page of our website. Even though North Lanarkshire Council has a duty and power to undertake Food Law Interventions and protect public health it should be remembered that the responsibility for ensuring safe food every day belongs to the food business operator and the staff working in the business.

Protective Services also publishes annual performance indicators in accordance with standards set by the Audit Commission.

Please use the 'contact us' box if you have any questions. For more information, see 'other useful websites'.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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