What to do in the event of a Food Poisoning Allegation

Protect your business and have a procedure in place for an Alleged Food Poisoning incident. Here are a few tips.

We recommend that all alleged food poisoning incidents are referred to and  dealt with by the Manager.  Only ever have one person liaising with your customer.  All staff should be aware of your procedure.

When an incident occurs, it is vital you act swiftly and professionally.  Collect the following information from your customer –

  • Customers name and address, mobile number and email address
  • Symptoms shown, start date and time and duration
  • Date and time they ate in your establishment
  • What they ate in your establishment
  • Who ate with them, what dishes did they eat and are they also suffering from any symptoms
  • Did they feel anything was wrong during their visit
  • What else have they eaten over the last few days

Then explain that you take their complaint very seriously and you will undertake a full investigation.

To investigate –

  • Check all food safety records are in order and note any anomalies (fridge/freezer temperatures, core cooking temperatures, cooling times and temperatures, kitchen cleaning schedule);
  • Identify if there were any problems with any of your procedures
  • Identify if any other similar complaints have been made

Keep in contact with your customer and tell them the outcome of your investigation.  If you establish that there is a problem, you will need to alert the Environmental Health Inspector (and Food Safety Guru if you are one of our clients).


Investigate first – DO NOT ADMIT LIABILITY.

Food Fact

Did you know that Arachibutyrophobia is the fear of getting peanut butter stuck to the top of your mouth (Yes – this is a real fear).