Food poisoning or foodborne illness

Foodborne illness – or food poisoning – is the name for illness caused by eating or drinking contaminated food or drink. Most is caused by harmful bacteria getting into food.

If you, your family or friends feel unwell, seek medical attention from your family doctor, or  after hours medical care.

If you suspect the cause of an illness is connected with food that has been purchased and eaten you should report this to a health protection officer at Hawke's Bay District Health Board; phone 06 878 8109 and ask to speak to the on call health protection officer.

The Public Health Unit staff will assess the information and if there is evidence that the illness was caused by food, the Ministry for Primary Industry (MPI) who are responsible for food safety. will be notified.  All notifications are monitored and assessed and if appropriate investigated.  If there are complaints about the same type of food, food business or group of people who feel unwell MPI may investigate further.