Kangs Solicitors has been instructed to represent a food operator client who has been served with a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice which has resulted in the closure of his business until the circumstances constituting the alleged health risk are resolved.

Sukhdip Randhawa of Kangs Solicitors outlines the procedure to be followed when a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Order is sought by a local authority from a Magistrates’ Court and which enables, inter alia, food business premises to be closed down immediately.

The Environmental and Food Safety Team at Kangs Solicitors regularly represents the proprietors of businesses subjected to investigations in relation to all aspects of the Food Safety & Hygiene Regulations across England and Wales. 

For an initial no obligation discussion, please contact our Team at any of the offices detailed below:     

The Procedure | Kangs Food Safety Solicitors

  • The local authority will normally serve a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice which contains a Schedule of Works considered necessary to render the business compliant with the governing Food and Health Safety Regulations.
  • Once the Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice has been served the local authority must apply to the Magistrates’ Court for the issue of a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Order within three working days. 
  • The court will then provide a date for this Hearing at which both parties have the opportunity to present the evidence upon which they rely, including that to be provided by any witnesses.
  • The Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013 states:

Regulation 8 subsection 2             

‘if a Magistrates’ Court is satisfied, on the application of such an officer, that the health risk condition is fulfilled with respect to any food business, the court shall, by an order (in these regulations referred to as a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Order) impose the appropriate prohibition’. 

  • If the court is not satisfied with the evidence provided by the local authority in support of the Application and an Order is not issued, then the business operator will be entitled to continue trading.  
  • In circumstances where the court does not issue an Order and the local authority has prior to the Hearing issued a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice the requirements of which the food operator has complied with but has suffered subsequent loss, as the result of the continuance of such proceedings, the business operator will be entitled to seek financial compensation.   

Relevant Case and Statutory Law | Kangs Hygiene Prohibition Order Solicitors

Crestdane Ltd (2012) EWCA crim958

Guidance on the making of such orders was provided by the Court of Appeal in the case of Crestdane Ltd (2012) EWCA crim958 where the Court of Appeal stated:  

each case must turn on its own facts, but it is clear that the Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Order is indeed to deal with the immediate threat to public health by food contamination…’. 

The Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulation 2013

Regulation 23 provides that there is a right of appeal to the Crown Court against the decision of the Magistrates’ Court.

How Can We Help? | Kangs National Food Safety Offences Defence Solicitors

The making of an Order, in itself, does not necessarily mean that the food operator is guilty of an offence. However, in our experience, the local authority will seek to prosecute following further investigations and potential interviews for an offence under the Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013 or associated regulations.

It is important for any business or individual facing any situation which may have criminal implications to seek expert legal advice at the earliest possible stage to ensure that the interests of those concerned can be protected as far as possible.  

If you are experiencing any issues involving Food and Health Safety and would appreciate expert advice, please do not hesitate to contact our Team through one of the following who will be happy to guide you:  

Suki Randhawa
srandhawa@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0121 449 9888 | 020 7936 6396 | 07989 521210

John Veale
jveale@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0121 449 9888 | 07989 521210

Amandeep Murria
amurria@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0121 449 9888 | 020 7936 6396