Reporting symptoms of food poisoning or allergic reactions
We are often contacted by people who suspect they have food poisoning that they link to a restaurant or takeaway.
If just one person suspects they have food poisoning it’s not always relevant for us to investigate, but if more than one person has become ill it’s important to let us know.
If you are suffering from diarrhoea or sickness and you think you have food poisoning you should visit your GP
They can give you medical advice and treatment and also organise for a faecal specimen to be taken from you. This will allow the type of infection you are suffering from to be identified.
Identification of the infection is crucial to pinpointing the possible cause of your illness and without this it is difficult to start an investigation into your illness.
Food poisoning normally takes at least 12 hours from the consumption of food for diarrhoeal symptoms to manifest and in some circumstances, symptoms can take several days to start. In some cases viral infections, not transmitted by food, can have similar symptoms to food poisoning which is also a reason why a sample needs to be taken to confirm the cause of illness.
More information on vomiting and diarrhoea can be found on the NHS website.
What happens after I make a complaint?
Once we have received your complaint, we will be in contact to advise of our next actions. We may need to ask you further details about your food history for the week leading up to your symptoms, and we may require a stool sample to be provided. These are usually done via a postal sample service.
Once we have gathered all the information required, we will decide whether further investigation is needed. Further investigation could include contacting the business and providing advice or visiting the premises to investigate further, in certain circumstances we may also be able to take food samples for analysis.
Where we find matters of concern during the investigation, we will take suitable actions to improve compliance levels. These actions will be taken in line with our enforcement policy.