Impressions Caterers fined £3k for cake containing nuts

By Jenny Eagle contact

- Last updated on GMT

Bride sick on wedding day due to cake containing nuts. Pict: Chartered Trading Standards Institute.
Bride sick on wedding day due to cake containing nuts. Pict: Chartered Trading Standards Institute.
Impressions Caterers in Towcester, Northampton, UK, has been fined £3k by Northamptonshire County Council Trading Standards after serving a cake that contained nuts.

The firm pleaded guilty to an offence contrary to the Food Safety Act at a hearing at Wellingborough Magistrates’ Court on October 9.

Wedding reception

It received a £3,156.36 penalty, which included a £850 fine, investigation costs and £85 victim surcharge fee.

The court heard Kayleigh Cortis and her husband Stephen hired Impressions Caterers to provide the reception and the food for their wedding reception at Hunsbury Hill Centre in September 2016.

The couple told the company about Mrs Cortis’s nut allergy and were assured the meal would be entirely nut-free.

However, during the wedding buffet, she realized the sponge cake she was eating contained almonds.

In her witness statement, Mrs Cortis said: “Overall the day was ruined because I couldn’t eat, or at least keep anything I’d eaten down, I couldn’t drink anything other than water and I was sick throughout the day​.”

The court heard how the company has since made changes to its processes and asked Trading Standards to visit its premises to make sure its systems are fully effective.

Customer allergies

It is very important that food businesses have the processes in place to ensure they know which foods can cause allergies and intolerance and that everyone working for the business is aware of customer allergies​,” said Cllr André Gonzalez de Savage, county council cabinet member for public protection, strategic infrastructure and economic growth, Northamptonshire County Council.

Catering firms must also display signs inviting consumers with allergies and intolerances – some of which can be life-threatening – to notify staff​. 

Our Trading Standards team is keen to work with businesses to help them navigate food safety laws and would encourage anyone who would like support to get in touch​.” 

Related topics: Regulation and safety, Bakery

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