Officers from the food team are responsible for undertaking food sampling which may be required as a result of:
- complaints about food
- local, national and international sampling programmes and initiatives
- process monitoring
Microbiological analysis by the Public Health Laboratory can show contamination with food poisoning organisims that may have caused sickness. Some foods may be contaminated with physical objects (such as insects) or chemicals. If you have a complaint please see our food complaint page for more information.
View online or download theFood Safety Sampling Policy [PDF 45kb]
Local, National and International Sampling Programmes and Initiatives
The service participates in sampling initiative organised by Local Government Regulation (LG Reg), the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH), Sussex Food Liaison Group, local Health Protection Agency (HPA) and those instigated by the Foods Standard Agency (FSA). The sampling programme includes food or food contact surfaces at approved premises, food manufacturers, and manufacturers selling mainly by retail as well as caterers and retailers. Samples of foods and food contact surfaces are also taken as part of routine work and when investigating specific issues at food premises.
The sampling programme for 2011/2012 included taking part in LG Reg studies. Surveys included:
- Lightly cooked food
- Pennington response study 3
- Salmonella Contamination of Raw Shell Duck Eggs
- Study into Listeriosis in fresh cut fruit
Local studies include:
- A regional study into Ready to Eat Meats
- A Regional Study into Smoked Fish
Where unsatisfactory results were obtained corrective action was put in place to improve standards and further samples were taken as a check.
The proposed sampling programme for 2012/2013 includes taking part in LG Reg studies. Surveys include:
- Olympic Preparation & Response Sampling
- Pate study - comparison of 'in-house' produced and large scale produced offal-based pate.
- Ongoing Pennington Response Study 3
- Ongoing study into Listeriosis in pre-cut fruit
- Further Reactive Response Study
Further local studies may also be carried out over the course of the year.