Food fraud 2016-2018

Please could you provide figures for the total number of local food fraud cases recorded by the council each year from 2016 until 2018 inclusive, (‘total reports’ includes all reports submitted by regional liaison groups, consumers, industry, police, government departments, enforcement bodies, and regional intelligence databases).  

Food fraud = the deliberate and intentional substitution, addition, tampering, or misrepresentation of food, food ingredients, or food packaging; or false or misleading statements made about a product for economic gain

Fraudulent intention is only likely to be identified during an investigation and ultimately determined by the courts. We therefore do not classify information received in this way. In relation to cases identified where Food advertising or labelling is an issue we recorded the following;

2016: 206

2017: 145

2018 to date: 143      

Please could you provide brief details of the cases of food fraud which were recorded, broken down by a) food business type, b) food type, c) nature of suspected or confirmed fraudulent activity

A) Food business type

Row Labels201620172018Grand Total
513548134
Airport/Airline11
Bakers/Bread/Flour55111
Betting/Casino/Arcade11
Bicycles11
Brewery112
Butchers & Meat1611734
Chemicals11
Chocolate products11
Cider Producers123
Cosmetics/Perfumes/Soap11
Department Store123
Farm – Livestock4127
Farmers Market11
Filling Station/Petrol/Oil2529
Fish2417
Fish Farm11
Food Manufacturer/Processor11
Food Producer11
Fruit/Vegetables/Greengrocer22
Garden Centre/Nursery11
General/Department Store235
Gifts/Fancy Goods112
Hardware/Ironmonger/Chandler11
Health Foods/Delicatessen3328
Importers (General safety)11
Intermediary123
Intox Liquor/Off Licence3216
Market Garden/Farm Shop11
Massage & Special Treatment11
Milk/Eggs/Dairy Products33511
Other Food1815841
Other Goods1236
Other Textiles11
Post Office11
Preserves1225
Public House4318
Restaurant/Cafe/Canteen99624
Sandwich makers11
Soft drinks inc water3159
Supermarket452635106
Sweet shop/Tobacco/News4217
Takeaway175123
Grand Total206145143494

 B) Food Type

Row Labels201620172018Grand Total
Additives1416
Alcoholic drinks1981239
Baby/infant foods1225
Bakery and cereal products911727
Beverages88
Beverages and bottled water (e36312
Cakes/confectionary159529
Dairy products1791541
Eggs/egg products2316
Fish and shellfish68418
Fruit and vegetables87924
Herbs and spices123
Meat42221579
Nuts/nut products448
Other55172294
Other drinks88925
Poultry538
Prepared food (e.g. pizzas, re2182141
Soups/broths/sauces4127
Supplements131014
Grand Total206145143494

 C) Nature of suspected or confirmed fraudulent activity

Row Labels201620172018Grand Total
Advertising44252089
Food Labelling1148484282
Labelling483639123
Grand Total206145143494

Please could you confirm the action taken by the council (including ‘no action’) 

All complaints are considered, and initial investigations undertaken.

In 2017 we had one prosecution involving misleading claims on food (Nutrition and Health Claims (England) Regulations 2007).  There were no prosecutions in other years therefore no action.