The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has put out a warning to operators of food businesses, to be aware of fraudsters that visit food business premises claiming they are from the FSA.
The fraudsters claim they need to carry out an inspection and then extract substantial amounts of money as a fixed penalty fee for the premises being allegedly unhygienic.
The FSA has stated it does not carry out food inspections and there are no fixed penalties for food safety breaches.
Inspections are carried out by authorised local authority inspectors who carry relevant identification when visiting a food business.
If your food business is visited by anyone claiming to be from the FSA, you should not part with any money and should contact the local police or your local authority.
You can also report the crime by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by phoning the food fraud hotline: 020 7276 8527.