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Food sampling

This page contains detailed advice on North Devon Council's food sampling programme.

Our responsibilities

North Devon Council recognises the important contribution food sampling makes to the protection of public health and our food law enforcement functions.

Our Food Safety team is responsible for undertaking the food sampling functions.

Wherever possible, food-sampling activities will include current national, regional and locally co-ordinated programmes as well as samples taken as a result of:
  • complaints
  • process monitoring
  • inspections
  • prime authority activities
  • special investigations
  • imported foods
The following factors will be taken into account when developing the sampling programme:
  • protection of the consumer through the enforcement of food legislation
  • identifying foods that pose a hazard to the consumer because they contain significant levels of pathogenic bacteria
  • assessing the microbiological quality of food manufactured, distributed or retailed in the area
  • identifying contravention’s of food safety legislation
  • helping determine whether advice or enforcement action would be appropriate where it is suspected that poor practices and procedures exist
  • offering advice and guidance, if appropriate, on food hygiene matters

Food sampling programmes

Scope of sampling

Devon County Council are responsible for food standards issues such as food composition or labelling, which usually require analysis of the samples.

Food complaints

Samples of food received as a food complaint may require either microbiological examination or chemical analysis.

All food complaints are taken seriously and the results of an examination or analysis may generate the need for more controlled sampling of the food product or from the food premises.

Sampling policies

Contact information

To contact the Customer Service Centre:

Telephone: 01271 388870
For Typetalk: precede with 18001
Text: 07624 804042
Fax: 01271 388451
Web form: report an incident
Web form: request a service

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Face to face:

Our office hours are Monday to Friday 9.00 am to 5.00 pm.