Businesses Urged To Be Honest With Food Provenance

Businesses are being urged to be honest regarding the provenance of food on their menus after a pub/restaurant was found for falsely describing the origin of the food it offered.

A partner in the pub was was early this month ordered to pay £7,430 in costs and fines by Llandrindod Wells Magistrates Court, after pleading guilty to falsely describing the food it offered on its menus, its website and on social media following a prosecution led by Powys County Council’s Trading Standards Service.

The court heard that trading standards had acted on a complaint it received from Natural Resources Wales (NRW) in April 2016 about concerns they had with menus displays by Foyles, particularly the descriptions ‘Wye Salmon’ and ‘Wye Trout’.

NWR passed their concerns to trading standards for investigation.

Following was 18-month investigation into the business it came to light that other false descriptions used by the business on their menus, websites and social media. Numerous partners and chefs/managers had to be interviewed by trading standards as part of the investigation, the court heard.

Cllr Jonathan Wilkinson, Cabinet Member for Trading Standards, said: “We must protect the public from false descriptions and support businesses that comply. Our trading standards team will act on intelligence to investigate businesses and, when in the public interest, pursue matters at court.

“The provenance of the food we eat is increasingly important to consumers; it’s vital that if food is described as being locally sourced, consumers can purchase this with complete confidence.”

Clive Jones, the council’s professional lead for trading standards, community safety and emergency planning, added: “Businesses have to get their descriptions correct and must not mislead consumers by false descriptions, otherwise they could end up being in breach of important fair trading and food safety regulations.”