Food poisoning is an illness caused by eating contaminated food. The symptoms may start suddenly and can include vomiting, diarrhoea, nausea and fever.

Most food poisoning is caused by bacteria. However, they can also be caused by viruses, chemicals and poisonous plants. It can take several hours or even days between eating contaminated food and experiencing the symptoms, which can make it difficult to identify the food that caused the illness. Similar symptoms may be caused by viruses that can be picked up from many sources and may not be due to contaminated food.

The Environmental Health service works with Public Health England to investigate food poisoning outbreaks. We will try to identify the source of the illness and take action to prevent further cases occurring.

It can be difficult to prove that food has caused illness and therefore it can be difficult to take action in single cases. Reporting suspected food poisoning will help us to identify businesses or foods that present a public health risk.

If you think a business in Southampton has caused food poisoning you can report it to use using the form below.

Report a food safety concern

Medical advice

If you are unwell and suspect you have food poisoning, you should seek medical advice. Contact NHS Direct or your GP.

Further information about food poisoning