By Sean Poulter Consumer Affairs Editor For The Daily Mail
Published: 23:44 GMT, 1 March 2020 | Updated: 07:48 GMT, 2 March 2020
Watchdogs are warning of a new health threat posed by ‘dark kitchens’ selling takeout food online.
People without training in hygiene or allergies are selling through social media such as Facebook Marketplace.
They are tapping into a growing appetite for home delivery that was started by Deliveroo, Just Eat and Uber Eats.
Ready meal: Watchdogs are warning of a new 'health threat' as businesses are using 'dark kitchens', which do not have an attached restaurant, and use untrained staff to sell takeaway food online. Pictured is one cabin turned kitchen - tapping into a growing appetite for home delivery that was started by Deliveroo, Just Eat and Uber Eats
So great is the explosion in demand that even major businesses such as McDonald’s have set up ‘dark kitchens’, which do not have a restaurant attached and operate from trading estates.
While these are legitimate and well policed, others are operated out of home kitchens by people with no training. Curries, pasta dishes and party food made in home kitchens are being sold without clear information on ingredients, which is risky for allergy sufferers.
The Food Standards Agency has put Facebook on notice that it expects food sold through its services to be policed correctly. Last week the FSA said the number of people who fall ill from eating tainted food was 2.4million.
A total of 380,000 food-borne illnesses a year are caused by the winter vomiting bug norovirus – with almost two thirds linked to eating out or