Councils are working hard to maintain and improve food safety standards despite the pressure that significant Government funding cuts are placing on everyday services.
Random sampling is just one tool available to councils and a reduction in testing does not mean an increased safety risk to the public.
Targeting high-risk businesses and acting on complaints is a far more effective use of their limited resources and also allows councils to free up responsible businesses from unnecessary inspections and red tape.
It is ultimately the responsibility of food manufacturers, retailers and suppliers to ensure the products they produce or sell comply fully with food law, are fit for consumption and won't risk public safety.
No one wants another horsemeat fiasco, so it is very worrying that local authority food checks are in decline.
We want to see a more strategic approach to food law enforcement that makes the best use of limited resources and responds effectively to the huge challenges facing the food supply chain.
Some local authorities in London are struggling to ensure businesses comply with food safety rules. A study by consumer watchdog Which? Bexley in south east London is the poorest-performing local authority, with five other London councils in the bottom 10.
- West Dunbartonshire
The research took into account premises such as hospitals, care homes, restaurants, takeaways, retailers and food suppliers.
The humble fish pie, a British winter staple, has undergone a five star makeover with a price tag to match.
Charlie Bigham's 'Swish Pie' is being launched in the capital today and promises to be the world's most expensive ready meal.
The ingredients themselves read like a VIP guest list: salmon poached in vintage DomPerignon, a 24ct gold crumb on top of the dish, sea salt harvested from the Piran Salt Pans and whitetruffles as well as an 'amuse-bouche' of Beluga Caviar.
And if this has tempted you into wanting to try a 'Swish Pie' then be warned, you'll have to fork out £314.16 for the privilege.
A chicken shop has been closed down, after health inspectors described it as one of "the filthiest premises" they had seen in a long time.Read the full story ›
The London Food Board has launched a website designed to help point people towards local services that can provide food for those in need.Read the full story ›
Every London school will have a vegetable garden according to new plans drawn up by the London Mayor.
Later this week Boris Johnson will set out his vision to try and improve the diets of young children whose families can not afford to regularly buy fresh fruit and vegetables. It comes as a poll revealed that one in three children in London struggles to concentrate at school because they're hungry.
A new report from the London Assembly calls for more action to help those who are going hungry, despite London being one of the richest cities in the world.Ria Chatterjee visited one of London's food banks in October 2012.
The London Assembly is calling for more action to help thousands of people going hungry in the capital, including school children.Read the full story ›
Test results show pork was present in a sample of halal chicken sausages which may have been supplied to 19 schools and nurseries. A further sample of non-halal lean mince beef shows that pork and lamb was present, potentially affecting 17 schools and nurseries
Schools serving halal chicken sausages:
- All Souls
- Churchill Gardens
- College Park
- Edward Wilson
- George Eliot
- Millbank Academy
- Paddington Green
- Queen's Park
- St Augustine's CE
- St Barnbas CE
- St Peters CE
- Mary Paterson Nursery
- Portman Childhood Centre
Schools serving halal chicken sausages and non halal lean mince beef:
- St. Mary’s Bryanston Square
Schools serving non halal lean mince beef:
- Barrow Hill
- Burdett Coutts
- Hampden Gurney
- Our Lady of Dolours
- QE II
- St Clement Danes
- St Edwards
- St Gabriel’s
- St George’s
- St James & St Michael’s school
- St James & St Michael’s nursery
- St Joseph’s
- St Mary Magdalene
- St Matthews
- St Vincent de Paul
- Westminster Cathedral
- Tachbrook Nursery