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Food safety - Privacy Notice

Who the council is and what the council does

Forest of Dean District Council is a data controller under the Data Protection Legislation as the council collects and processes personal information about you in order to provide services and meet their statutory and regulatory obligations.

This notice explains why the council asks for your personal information, how that information will be used and how you can access your records.

Any questions regarding our privacy practices should be sent to:

Data Protection Officer (DPO)
Forest of Dean District Council
Council Offices
Coleford GL16 8HG
Tel: 01993 861194

Why the council needs your information and how the council uses it

Regulatory Services are responsible for the inspection and investigation of the food safety and hygiene standards of food within the district. They assess compliance with the relevant legislation and record Food Business Registration information. The purpose of this is to protect consumers in relation to food. Food Safety includes all stages of the production, processing, distribution and sale of food intended for human consumption.

The main purposes for processing your personal information are:

  • Registering/approving and inspecting food businesses
  • Investigating complaints about food and food premises
  • Investigating cases of food poisoning and cases of infectious diseases
  • Sampling food
  • Providing advice and guidance to food business operators, food handlers and members of the public

The council does not sell your personal information to anyone else.

What is the legal process for collecting and processing this data

Under the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018, the lawful bases we rely on for processing this information are:

  • UK GDPR Article 6 (1) (a) Consent – the data subject has given consent to the processing of his or her personal data for one or more specific purposes. 
  • UK GDPR Article 6 (1) (c) Legal Obligation – processing is necessary for compliance with legal obligation to which the council is subject.
  • UK GDPR Article 6 (1) (e) Public Task – processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest in the exercise of official authority vested in the council.

The lawful basis on which we collect and use special category data is that:

  • Article 9(1)(i) of the Data Protection Act – Public health

What type of information is collected from you

  • Your name
  • Business name
  • Address (including your personal address if this is different to the business address)
  • Telephone number (including your personal number if this is different to the business number)
  • Email address (business and/or personal)

If you are making a complaint about food or a food business or if you are requesting advice, we collect the following information:

  • Your name
  • Your address
  • Your telephone number
  • Your email address (if applicable)

When we investigate cases of infectious diseases (including food poisoning), we collect the following information:

  • Your name
  • Your job or business name (if applicable)
  • Your address
  • Your date of birth
  • Your telephone number
  • Your email address (if applicable)
  • Details of your employment (or in case of your child, their school details)
  • Medical Information, including when you became ill, symptoms and duration of illness
  • Names of family members or other close contacts, together with their employment or school details
  • Places you have visited, eaten, or bought food from

Special category data

We may also collect, store and use the following "special categories" of more sensitive personal information:

  • Information about your racial or ethnic origin (where we are dealing with infectious diseases)
  • Information about your sex life and sexual orientation (where we are dealing with infectious diseases)
  • Information about your health, including any medical condition, health and sickness records (where we are dealing with infectious diseases)
  • Information about criminal convictions and offences (where we are dealing with food prosecutions

The above list is not exhaustive. The council will only ask for personal information that is appropriate to enable us to deliver our services. In some cases you can refuse to provide your details if you deem a request to be inappropriate. However, you should note that, this may impact on our ability to provide some services to you.

We collect this information by telephone, email, social media, writing or in person.

Who your information may be shared with (internally and externally)

Your data is shared internally only with the appropriate staff where it is necessary for the performance of their roles.

Details of food businesses and food business operators (FBOs) may be shared with the Food Standards Agency (FSA), the independent government department responsible for food safety.

Under prescribed circumstances, for example the prevention and detection of crime or for tax collection purposes, we may share Food Business personal information with:

  • The police
  • HMRC
  • Home Office Immigration
  • The county council

We will not normally share your information with organisations without your consent. However the council will use the information for the purpose of performing any of its statutory enforcement duties. It will make any disclosures required by law and may also share this information with other bodies responsible for detecting/preventing fraud or auditing/administering public funds or where the council is required and allowed to by law, to safeguard public safety and in risk of harm or emergency situations.

The council will not share your information with third parties for marketing purposes. 

How long the council keeps your information (retention period)

We will keep your information for as long as it is required by us or other regulatory bodies in order to comply with legal and regulatory requirements or for other operational reasons. In most cases this will be:

  • 6 years (Limitation Act 1980) from the date of inspection or enquiry
  • 10 years from the service of any Notice
  • 3 years for adults and 25 years for children in case of accident forms or reports.

Once your data is no longer needed it will be securely and confidentially destroyed or disposed of the data in line with retention schedules.

How the council protects your information

Your data is stored securely on our systems and accessed only by authorised officers using their own username and password created in line with pre-defined user credentials. Personal data is also held in electronic files on the council’s network drives. These are only accessible through personal logon credentials and access privileges to specific drives. Access to our council sites require a personal electronic pass to access staff only areas. The council has strict procedures for the way this is done. Any and all information about you is treated as confidential and with respect. There are also clear rules and guidance about storing, recording and sharing information which staff receive training on.

The council will not transfer your personal data outside the EU without your consent.

The council have implemented generally accepted standards of technology and operational security in order to protect personal data from loss, misuse or unauthorised alteration or destruction.  

Please note however that where you are transmitting information to us over the internet this can never be guaranteed to be 100% secure.  

The council will notify you promptly in the event of any breach of your personal data which might expose you to serious risk.

Your rights

You have the following rights under the Data Protection Legislations:

  • To access your personal data
  • To be provided with information about how your personal data is processed
  • To have your personal data corrected
  • To have your personal data erased in certain circumstances
  • To object to or restrict how your personal data is processed
  • To have your personal data transferred to yourself or to another business in certain circumstances
  • To be told if the council have made a mistake whilst processing your data and the council will self-report breaches to the Commissioner.

How you can access, update or correct your information

The Data Protection law gives you the right to apply for a copy of information about yourself. This is called a ‘Subject Access Request'.

If you wish to see a copy of your records you should contact the Data Protection Officer. You are entitled to receive a copy of your records free of charge, within a month.

In certain circumstances access to your records may be limited, for example, if the records you have asked for contain information relating to another person.

The accuracy of your information is important to us to be able to provide relevant services more quickly. The council is working to make our record keeping more efficient. In the meantime, if you change your address or email address, or if any of your circumstances change or any of the other information the council holds is inaccurate or out of date, please email us or write to us at:

Food Safety
Forest of Dean District Council
Council Offices
Coleford GL16 8HG

Further information

If you would like to know more about how the council uses your information, or if for any reason you do not wish to have your information used in any of the ways described in this privacy notice, please contact the Data Protection Officer at

For more information about data protection please visit:

If you are concerned about the way the council is handling your personal information you can contact the Information Commissioner (ICO):

The council reserves the right to update this privacy notice from time to time by publishing a new version on our website.