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Food hygiene emergency prohibition notices

If you run a food business and are visited by an Environmental Health Officer to inspect your establishment, they will be looking to make sure that your premises and food hygiene and safety practices all meet the required standards. If they find that there are serious breaches which are putting customers or staff at risk, they can apply to serve an emergency prohibition order that will mean you must stop serving any food straight away. The notice is the paperwork that lets you know that the Officer is applying for an order that will demand you cease all food-related business activity.

This hygiene emergency prohibition notice closure (activated if the order is granted) will remain in place until the Environmental Health Officer is satisfied that the imminent risk of injury to health has been eliminated.

We have experience in helping restaurants and other food businesses to successfully defend food hygiene emergency prohibition orders. Call us on 0161 696 6250 to find out how we can help you.


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What is a hygiene emergency prohibition notice and what does it mean for your business?

If you are served with a hygiene emergency prohibition notice, it means that the Environmental Health Officer intends to apply for a court order to stop you trading with any food-related activity immediately. For many businesses, this will mean that your establishment must close. A notice will be displayed at the premises to inform customers what has happened, which can be very damaging for your business’ reputation and brand image, as well as the lost trade whilst the business isn’t allowed to trade.

The Environmental Health Team must apply for the hygiene emergency prohibition order from a magistrates’ court and must give the food business at least one day’s notice that they are doing so.

Removing hygiene emergency prohibition notices and orders

There should be a magistrates’ court hearing before the order is granted, which the food business owner can attend or be represented at. If the order is granted, you must make all of the necessary changes at your premises to remove the risks identified and then apply for the order to be removed.

The decision will be made within 14 days of the removal request and either the prohibition order will be removed and you can resume your normal business activity, or the reasons why not will be set out and you must meet the standards given before you can apply for removal again.

As an experienced food industry law firm, along with our expertise across the board in legal services for businesses, we can offer specialist support if you’ve received a food hygiene emergency prohibition notice or order. Get in touch for more information by calling 0161 696 6250.  

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