Misleadingly describing food - restaurant chain received large fine
On Tuesday this week, a leading Italian style restaurant was fined £40,000 for misleadingly describing food, following the admission of the charge at Swansea Magistrates' Court last year.
The dish in question was the 'Aragosta e Gamberoni' (lobster and king prawns), retailing for £14.95.
The investigation followed a routine inspection by Swansea Council's Trading Standards team, which raised concerns about the item. Ultimately, the investigation determined that the dish contained 35% lobster and 34% white fish but with other ingredients formed to look like lobster meat.
It has been reported that sales of the dish amounted to £3m across the UK since it was launched in 2014 but that the dish was withdrawn once the concern about it was brought to light.
The defendant apologised for the "error" and "strongly denied" there had been any financial motivation involved purporting that the dish had the lowest profit margin of all the restaurant's pasta dishes and that there was no health and safety risk associated with the case.
As can be seen, such matters are treated very seriously by the authorities so should your business face any similar regulatory matters then please do not hesitate to contact our solicitors.