Allergy sufferers at risk after six Worthing and Lancing takeaways fail test

Six takeaways in Worthing and Lancing have failed an undercover test of their food, which contained allergens when there should not have been any.

West Sussex Trading Standards officers posed as customers with an egg allergy when ordering noodle dishes from ten takeaways in Worthing and Lancing, a spokesman said.

Six takeaways in Worthing and Lancing failed the test. Picture: West Sussex Trading Standards

Six takeaways in Worthing and Lancing failed the test. Picture: West Sussex Trading Standards

Six of the businesses supplied dishes which, on analysis, were found to contain trace levels of egg. This means that although egg was not an ingredient, the dish had been contaminated with egg - most likely from utensils that had been used to prepare egg dishes or the ingredients themselves had been in contact with egg.

Tests proved the levels were sufficient to have caused a reaction for some people with an egg allergy.

Officers are trying to determine how the cross-contamination took place at the business concerned.

Trading Standards was approached by the paper for the names of the takeaways, but they said they could not provide them at this time.

Trading Standards Manager Peter Aston said: “Although the takeaways where issues were found were in Worthing and Lancing, it would be a reasonable assumption that similar results would be found across the county. For this reason we are going to be contacting takeaways likely to be selling noodle dishes, advising them of the steps they should be taking to stop cross-contamination."

Spot checks will continue to be taken from other sellers around the county.

Debbie Kennard, cabinet member for stronger safer communities at West Sussex County Council, said: “It is essential customers with allergies are able to have full confidence when they eat out. The findings of the trading standards team are a real concern. Food-sellers must comply with their legal responsibility to avoid cross-contamination. If not, they will face action.”

If you have suffered an allergic reaction following a meal out, you can let Trading Standards know by calling 03454 040506 or go to www.westsussex.gov.uk/tsreport