Food safety bosses have warned businesses of a scam aimed at its “scores on the doors” food hygiene rating scheme.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) said three local authorities in Wales and one in England had received reports of a person claiming to be from a local authority, demanding money from food businesses for a food hygiene re-rating and warning that failure would result in a fine.
It stressed neither the FSA nor local authorities would demand money in such a way.
Local authorities are responsible for carrying out inspections of food businesses to check that they meet the requirements of food hygiene law but can only charge when the re-rating inspection is requested by the food business and will not demand that a request is made.
“Although the number of reports of this particular scam are low, we are concerned that businesses may lose money to fraudsters pretending to be from the FSA or a local authority,” said Angela Towers, head of the food hygiene rating team of the FSA.
“If you are approached by someone asking you to hand over money in this way, do not make any payment and always advise your local authority.”