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Food complaints

Food contamination

The food that you buy must be fit to eat and free from contamination. We will investigate complaints about food purchased within the city of Lincoln to ensure food and food packaging meet legal requirements. If you buy food and then find a problem with it, do you know what to do? You could take it back to the shop to be replaced or to have a refund, of course. In most cases this will be the best thing to do. But what if you buy food that is contaminated? We will investigate complaints of:

  • Contamination by mould or foreign matter/objects

  • Contamination by microorganisms or their toxins

  • Unfit food

  • Food sold beyond its use by date

It is important that you keep all the food, not just the foreign body. Place it in a suitable container, for example a plastic bag or an air tight sandwich box, and keep it in your fridge. Take care to place it where it cannot come into contact with other foods or where it can get dripped on.

If the foreign body is embedded in the food, for example, an insect in a slice of cake, do not try to remove it.

Keep all the packaging, including the lids of cans and tops of packets for example, and the receipt if possible as they may be needed to identify the factory where the food was made or the date and time of manufacture.

Food businesses have a legal duty to only sell food that is fit for human consumption and which is of a satisfactory standard and quality. If you find a problem then contact us, you can use our online form, email environmental.health@lincoln.gov.uk or call 01522 873249, and we will take appropriate action if the law has been broken.