Wales Heads of Trading Standards

Improving Trading Standards in Wales

Penaethiaid Safonau Masnach Cymru Yn Gwella Safonau Masnach Yng Nghymru

Food safety inspections

The standard and safety of food is of paramount importance to the protection and promotion of public health.

Our Trading Standards service will carry out programmed inspections under the Food Safety Act 1990 at all food manufacturers and retailers in the county. The frequency of inspection visits will depend upon the assessed risk and varies between one and five years. Our officers may work with the Food Standards Agency, other Trading Standards departments and environmental health officers from the district councils in the area.Trading Standards is responsible for food labelling and composition. Hygiene and foreign body matters are dealt with by environmental health officers.

Frequently asked questions

Can I sell food once it is past its 'use by' date or 'best before' date?

It is illegal to sell foods past their 'use by' date.  However, you may sell food past its 'best before' date if the quality is still satisfactory. You may need to test this food in some way before you carry on selling it. You must not alter the dates on food, only the manufacturer can do this.

Do I need to register my premises with you?

It is a legal requirement to register your food premises. You need to contact an Environmental Health Officer at your Local Authority to do this.

How often is my business likely to be inspected?

If you are making foods it may be once a year.  If you are a caterer or retailer it can vary between two and five years depending on the size of your business and the type of food you are selling.

What areas do inspectors look at?

If you are manufacturing food, officers will look at recipes, raw ingredients, storage of ingredients and finished product, quality control, the production process and labelling and presentation of the product. In non-manufacturing premises, officers are primarily concerned with the labelling and descriptions of food, stock control and the safety of containers and utensils used to display and serve food.

External web links

Trading Standards Business Companion - Link to information on food requirements for businesses

Food Standards Agency  - Link to information from the Food Standards Agency

If you have any queries about this subject contact your local authority Trading Standards Service