Food Law

Food can be big business, whether it’s served for on-site consumption or packaged and sold for customers to take home. However, food is also something that absolutely must be entirely safe and suitable for consumption, and therefore it is an area which is subject to strict and sometimes complicated regulations.

The rules surrounding the sale of food to consumers are extensive, and deal with various different aspects of the production and sale process. They also fall within the domains of different regulatory bodies. For instance, some are enforced by local authorities, and others by the Food Standards Agency.

Food Laws and Regulations

Just some of the areas of food preparation, packaging and sale that require careful consideration are:

  • Hygiene: Ensuring that proper, appropriate measures are taken to ensure that food is prepared and packaged in a suitably hygienic environment with minimal risk of contamination. This applies both to food that is prepared for immediate consumption and food that is prepared for future sale for retail.
  • Labelling: Businesses must make sure that packaged food is labelled to at least the standards required by law when it comes to details such as ingredients lists, potential allergens, and the nature of the contents.
  • Quantities: When food is sold by weight, volume, number or any other measure of quantity, or when packaged food is labelled with such a quantity, businesses must ensure that the actual measure provided is suitably accurate. Quantities must match those stated within sufficiently narrow margins.

The exact rules that apply may vary based upon the nature of your business, the type of food you prepare, and the circumstances in which it is sold.

Operating as a Food Law Barristerer

It can be difficult to ensure your business is properly following all of the many and varied laws that surround the sale of food and drink – or even to work out exactly what those rules are. As a food law barrister with a special professional interest in food legislation, I can help provide reliable and accurate legal advice on the position of your business and the nature of the laws it has to deal with, in much the same way that traditional food law lawyers and food law solicitors do.

As a professional food law barrister, I can also provide you with help and support if you are facing enforcement action or you have, perhaps, received an improvement or prohibition notice for alleged breach of food laws. I can help to clarify your exact legal position and guide you through the process you will face as proceedings against you unfold. On top of that, I can provide you with dedicated legal advocacy, defending your case with the backing of solid evidence and the exact letters of the law.

As a food law barrister, I have undertaken food hygiene cases throughout my career at the bar and in recent times have consolidated this experience into a practice that has regularly seen me advising clients in food hygiene and safety related matters and appearing in courts both on behalf of businesses and for enforcement agencies. This approach adds strength to my representation by giving me and therefore the client an insight into the processes and strategies employed by each side in this type of litigation. As an ex-investigator I am able to bring a unique and advantageous forensic analysis to any defence of action taken by enforcement authorities against Food Business Operators of any kind and offer informed tactical advice at the pre-trial stage.

If you require the services offered by conventional food law lawyers or food law solicitors, as well as a professional food law barrister to represent you in court, please contact my clerk and ask for Stuart Jessop on 0207 797 8408 or


Court Rules that Premises was not an HMO

Court Rules that Premises was not an HMO

Stuart Jessop has successfully represented a landlord in a prosecution by the London Borough of Camden under section 72 of the Housing Act 2004, alleging that the property was a house in multiple occupation, requiring to be licensed under part 2 of the Act but which...

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I met Stuart when I was on the opposing side in a recent licensing appeal. Since that time Woods Whur have instructed him in matters, in the most recent of which he won and had costs awarded in our client's favour. I would have no hesitation in recommending him.

Mr. P Whur, London

Mr Jessop is excellent at identifying the issue, asking relevant questions and setting out the way forward. He is friendly & approachable at all times and puts clients at ease. He elicits and analyses the evidence and advises clients clearly on the prospects of success. We recommend Mr Jessop to clients without hesitation.

Mr. G Hopkins, London

It’s not often you meet someone as tenacious as Mr Jessop. He is committed, efficient and persuasive and possess all of the qualities you could wish for from your lawyer. He is positive where others are negative, he shows dogged determination to deliver the right result for his client. I have no hesitation in recommending him - top class.

Mr. D Rogers, London

Stuart Jessop, counsel, has covered a number of difficult Licensing applications through Sanders Solicitors, including Hearings before Licensing Committees and Appeal Hearings in the Magistrates' Court. Clients have always been complementary of Mr. Jessop's advocacy and advice. He easily grasps the issues at hand and is readily forthcoming with advice on LW, Practice and Procedure.

Mr. C Turner, London

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