Guidance

Appeal against a food labelling decision or improvement notice

How to appeal if you are given a notice for misleading your customers by a food regulator, inspector or trading standards officer.

What you can appeal against

You can appeal against a food labelling decision or improvement notice issued by:

  • Food Standards Agency
  • Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)
  • trading standards

This may happen if they believe your menu, labels, packaging or advertising are misleading for customers.

Time limits for appealing

You have 28 days to appeal after the regulator sends or gives you the notice.

If you miss the time limit, you can ask for more time to appeal. Explain why you’re late, and the tribunal will decide if it can still accept your case.

The tribunal

Your case will be dealt with by a tribunal in the General Regulatory Chamber.

The tribunal is independent of the government, and will listen to both sides of the argument before it reaches its decision.

How to appeal

Use the notice of appeal form and guidance leaflet.

Clearly say why you want to appeal against the decision.

Include any supporting documents, like the improvement notice.

Send the form to grc@hmcts.gsi.gov.uk or:

General Regulatory Chamber
HM Courts & Tribunals Service
PO Box 9300
Leicester
LE1 8DJ

Telephone: 0300 123 4504

Tribunal staff can explain how the process works, but they can’t give you legal advice.

What happens next

The tribunal will write to you explaining the next steps.

Find out more about General Regulatory Chamber hearings and decisions.

Legislation and rules

You can find the right to appeal in the Food Safety Act 1990 (section 37 and section 39).

The Act has been amended by the regulations below, which transferred appeals to the tribunal:

Read more detailed rules on how your case will be handled in the General Regulatory Chamber procedure rules.

Published 19 December 2014
Last updated 13 January 2015 + show all updates
  1. Update to include reference to The Products Containing Meat etc (England) Regulations 2014
  2. First published.