Mole Valley District Council (MVDC) will investigate complaints about food sold within the district to protect public health and ensure that food and food packaging meets the relevant legal standards.
When you purchase food outside the district, MVDC will advise you on which local authority will deal with your complaint and may also be able to assist in transferring the food to that authority.
Enforcement duties for food complaints have been divided between the district and county councils.
MVDC will investigate complaints of:
- contamination by micro-organisms or their toxins
- contamination by mould or foreign matter/objects
- chemicals where there are hygiene implications and/or a possible imminent risk to health
Surrey County Council Trading Standards will investigate complaints of:
- chemical contamination where there are no hygiene implications/imminent risk to health
- compositional offences, adulteration and misleading claims
- food sold after its best before or use by date
- presentation and labelling of food
- separate procedures are operated for allegations of food poisoning or food hygiene
Trading Standards can be contacted by phone, on 01372 371700.
Making a food complaint
When you make a complaint, MVDC will initially need to know:
- your name, address, telephone contact numbers (mobile, home and work), fax and email contact details as appropriate
- the identity and contact address of the person who discovered the cause of the complaint, if it was not you
- as much as possible about the food, where you bought it, when, the condition of the packaging etc.
- the history to the point of discovery, did you have it delivered, did you buy it and take it home and where the product was stored
- what you have done with it and any treatment (e.g. refrigeration or cooking) it has undergone while in your possession
- the name and address of any witnesses who were present when you discovered the problem
- any ill effects or any injuries that were suffered
- whether you have been to hospital or contacted your doctor about any ill effects
- any contact you have had with the vendor or manufacturer
- any evidence you have including packaging, the complaint item, left over food, receipts etc
If formal action is considered necessary, MVDC will ask you to make a statement and you may be asked to attend court and give evidence. Please note that MVDC will not seek to obtain or otherwise negotiate any compensation or redress on the behalf of the complainant(s).
MVDC has produced a Food and Food Premises Complaints Policy (see 'Downloads') which has been approved by elected members.