Of all the official visits we get, I have to say that this is my least favourite. It would be nice if Trading Standards officers worked with us and had mutual respect like our EHO, rather than adopting a somewhat adversarial approach.
Having said this, our new Trading Standards office was very pleasant and found nothing at all untoward and was very thorough in her inspection.
Like our EHO, she picked three make sheets, one cow, one goat and one sheep, traced it back to the milk intake sheet, looked at the different starters and rennet that we use, inspecting closely for best before dates, asking me when we would use them….then to the batch book and as they were recent makes, inspected them in the cold room, then to the labels. That took twenty minutes.
She then checked both sets of scales, one we use for weight tickets for customer orders – so important – and the second set we have as back up and for our own purposes. We have our scales calibrated on an annual basis as part of our BRC, so I wasn’t worried about it and I check them every week anyway with our own weights.
She put a series of weights on, including ours, up to 5kgs and back down again on both sets of scales. This took another fifteen minutes.
Another clean bill of health. Like the EHO, I always treat these visits with respect, for whilst I am not aware that we are doing anything wrong, both EHOs and Trading Standards can close you down, so there is no room for complacency.