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Getting to Grips with the Food Safety Act

At the Training Express, we look to inspire anyone who is ready to make the most of their professional qualities. To do that, we look to build up your base of knowledge on a variety of topics. One of the most important topics within the hospitality industry, for example, is the Food Safety Act. What does this act mean for you?

As a food or hospitality business in the United Kingdom, one of the most important acts you need to follow is the Food Safety Act 1990. These Act itself represents a cornerstone in your business best practice. What happens, though, if you were to find yourself amid a food safety debacle?

If there is an incident with regards to food safety, it could rock your business – in worst case scenarios, it could see your ability to stay open harmed. However, in the event of a claim against your business with regards to the Food Safety Act 1990, you can argue on due diligence grounds. Using due diligence as your argument is seen as the best way to diffuse such a situation.

While customer may have had a negative experience, you could have done everything in your power to prevent. Defective food, for example, could have been the fault of a supplier or a trader. If you take all reasonable care to try and avoid problems, then you could avoid legal action via the Food Safety Act 1990.

Getting-to-Grips-with-the-Food-Safety-Act
Getting to Grips with the Food Safety Act

What does due diligence mean in this regard?

Typically, due diligence would be seen as an accepted defence if:

·       Your business has taken all reasonable and accepted checks for all food or they relied upon their supplier to carry out the checks. This, though, needs to come with reasonable evidence and circumstance.

·       Your business committed the act, but was due to unforeseen or uncontrollable circumstances such as incorrect information from a supplier.

·       The complainant never provided pertinent information to the serving staff which could have avoided the issue i.e. no allergies were made clear prior to ordering.

·       There was no real legitimate reason to believe that your actions could have led to an offence.

While ignorance might not always be an excuse that wins, these actions above will likely go in your favor. You should, though, do everything that you can to both avoid food issues and to build your business up around avoiding having to rely upon due diligence arguments.

We recommend that you take a look at our Food Safety courses here at the Training Express. These could play a leading role in helping you to overcome any potential risks. If you are worried about the potential risk of censure due to an incident, though, you should definitely look to further evaluate your use of due diligence with regards to food preparation and safety.

May 27, 2019

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