Wigan’s Trading Standards team is working with food businesses across the borough to improve allergen information for customers.
In 2019, there were numerous high-profile cases in which poor labelling led to preventable deaths in the UK and this is why Wigan is taking a proactive approach to make sure people are protected.
Trading Standards and Environmental Health work with businesses in the borough by providing advice, help and support so they can comply with legal requirements.
Buffets are considered to be a higher risk setting as often the business providing the food will not be present at the venue when the food is being eaten.
In light of this, the council is offering some simple tips for residents looking for a buffet provider:
• Check that they have a valid Food Hygiene rating by looking on the Food Standards Agency ratings website at https://ratings.food.gov.uk/. The rating will tell you if the business had a good standards of hygiene when last inspected by Environmental Health.
• Ask the people you are inviting if they have any food allergies or dietary requirements and make this known to the business.
• Ask the business how it will provide you with allergen information and what steps it takes if someone will be attending the buffet who has a food allergy or intolerance.
• At the venue, information must be available which tells you what allergens are in the food as part of the recipe and also what allergens may be in the food due to for example, cross contamination.
• Make sure that you receive a receipt specifying what you have asked for so that you have evidence as to what has been agreed.
Catering businesses in the borough can find more information on legal obligations to protect consumers with allergens, at https://www.wigan.gov.uk/Business/Environmental-Health/Food-Hygiene-and-Safety/Food-Allergy-Business.aspx