Guide

What to expect from a food safety inspection

How to appeal against a decision of a food inspector

If you do not agree with a decisionĀ made by a food safety inspector, you should first discuss this with the inspector. If you are unable to resolve the issue with the person you have been dealing with, ask them for the name of their manager. You can then ask to speak with, or if you prefer, write to them to see if the issue can be resolved.

If you still disagree after this process, you should use the local council's complaints procedure to escalate your problem. After this, if your issue is still not resolved, you could contact your local councillor. If they still do not take steps to put things right, you can contact the Northern Ireland Ombudsman.

If you are dealing with a hygiene improvement notice, or a decision not to lift a hygiene emergency prohibition order, you can appeal to the magistrates' court. You are not permitted to operate pending the outcome of an appeal against a withdrawal or refusal of approval.

Any food that has been seized by an inspector can only be classified as unfit for human consumption by a magistrate. If the court decides that premises have been shut without proper reason or that food has been wrongly seized or detained, you have a right to claim compensation.