The department is part of the Northamptonshire Food Surveillance Group and each year the group meets to set its sampling objectives for the year, which will include local as well as national and European sampling programmes.
Samples are taken from food businesses in the Kettering district and are sent for analysis to the accredited Public Health England laboratory in Birmingham.
The samples are taken anonymously wherever possibly so that they are obtained just as the customer would receive them. The food businesses are informed of the results whether they are good or bad. Poor results will often be followed up with further sampling and visits to the business to discuss the results with the proprietor.