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Eat, Drink and Be Wary

Scottish consumer advice about food and drink issues

Scotland’s food and drink industry is one of the best in the world but some consumers in Scotland are getting a raw deal and facing poor quality produce and service by some leading food retailers and manufacturers.

In Citizens Advice Scotland’s first ever report on food and drink issues we summarise some of the most common issues brought to the service by consumers. Between August 2015 and December 2016 our consumer helpline assisted with over 800 enquiries regarding food and drink. Additionally there were over 200 enquires at local CAB regarding food and drink. This report analyses the food and drink case notes from the national consumer helpline service. The main findings are:

►The most common complaint regarded the selling of out of date foodstuff by retailers

►A number of vulnerable consumers had reported being targeted by door to door high pressure sales of poor quality fish. Some of these clients had lost hundreds of pounds

►There was an alarming number of reports relating to potentially counterfeit alcohol passed off as popular brands of spirit and wine. However these reports were exclusive to the Greater Glasgow areas and mostly associated with convenience stores.

►Scotland’s supermarkets were the most commonly reported retailer associated with calls relating to food and drink. Delivery issues and the finding of foreign bodies were the most common for cases relating to supermarkets.

Fraser Sutherland
Publication date
December 2016
Publication type
Number of pages