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Food safety inspections

If you run a food business you must follow the law on food safety.

It is our responsibility to make sure that all food businesses in Newham follow the law.​​​​​​​

Food hygiene and food standards inspections

We will inspect your business at times to make sure the food is safe to eat, and that it is labelled and packaged correctly. We will inspect without notice, unless you run your business from home.
By law, if you run a food business you must have a plan for managing food safety, and you must base that plan on the principles of Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP)
The Food Standards Agency's (FSA) Safer Food, Better Business is a good example of a system for managing food safety based on the HACCP principles. It is suitable for many types of business.

What happens when we inspect your food business

When we inspect, we will investigate: 
  • your buildings, their layout and structure
  • your methods and management
  • general hygiene
  • cross-contamination (transfer of bacteria from one food item to another)
  • temperature control
  • the type of food you serve and how you make it 
  • any special cooking methods
  • whether you describe the food properly, including any allergens (ingredients which could cause allergic reactions such as nuts).
And there will also be checks to see that your staff are properly trained and that you keep proper records for your business.

How we rate food safety

Food hygiene rating scheme

After we inspect your business premises, we will rate it from 0-5 to show how closely you meet food hygiene law standards. 0 is the highest risk, 5 is the lowest risk. Find out more about the food ratings.

The food hygiene rating scheme helps people to choose where to eat out or shop for food, by giving them up-to-date information on food businesses in the borough.

You can search for ratings for local businesses on the Food Standards Agency website.

What happens after a food safety inspection?

After we inspect your business we will give you an inspection report. We may also send you a letter, telling you what, how and when to improve if necessary. You will then need to make these improvements and show us that you have.
Depending on what we find during inspections, we may also tell you what you need to do.

If we find serious problems with food safety

If there are serious problems we may send you a 'notice'. The notice is a document setting out how you are breaking the law, and what you need to do to meet the law. A notice can order you to stop using certain types of equipment or methods until you make improvements. We will inspect your business again to make sure that you have done what we asked.

If you do not do what we ask in the notice, we can prosecute you.


How to appeal against the findings of a food safety inspection

You can find details of how to appeal on the letter or notice we send you.

The team leader for food will review your rating and communicate the outcome of your appeal to you within 21 days.


Food Hygiene Rating Scheme

The Team Leader for Food will review your rating and communicate the outcome of your appeal to you within 21 days.
  • As the food business operator of the establishment you have a right to appeal the food hygiene rating given following your inspection if you do not agree that the rating reflects the hygiene standards and management controls found at the time of the inspection. 
  • You have 21 days (including weekends and bank holidays) from the date of receipt of the notification letter to lodge an appeal. 
  • The Team Leader for Food will review your rating and communicate the outcome of your appeal to you within 21 days.

Food Hygiene Rating Scheme: Request for a re-visit

  • As the food business operator of the establishment you have a right to request a re-visit for the purposes of re-rating if you have taken action to rectify the non-compliances identified at the time of inspection.
  • You can usually make one request for a re-visit per each planned statutory inspection by the local authority and you can make this at any time after the statutory inspection provided that you have made the required improvements. Some local authorities will charge for this re-visit. The letter informing you of your rating will indicate this and the amount charged. Where a charge is made, there is no limit on the number of requests you may make.
  • You must provide details of the improvements made with your request, including supporting evidence where appropriate.
  • If you have provided sufficient evidence that the required improvements have been made, and provided that a three month ‘stand still’ period has passed since the statutory inspection, the local authority will make an unannounced visit. This will take place within three months of the end of the three month ‘stand still’ period or within three months of the request if this made after the ‘stand still’ period (if you were only required to make permanent structural improvements or repairs or to upgrade equipment, the local authority can choose to carry out the requested re-visit sooner than this).
  • The food officer will give you a ‘new’ food hygiene rating based on the level of compliance that is found at the time of the re-visit - you should be aware that your rating could go up, down or remain the same.
Request for a re visit (PDF)​
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Contact us

  • Food Safety Team
    Grassroots Centre
    66 Memorial Avenue
    E15 3DB

    020 3373 7709

    Email us