Ian Thomas
Call: 1993
Direct access

Ian Thomas is a very experienced food lawyer. He is also experienced in providing advice in relation to non-food consumer products.

He advises on a range of non-contentious and contentious matters in these areas and provides advocacy in relation to criminal prosecutions and appeals against enforcement action (both criminal and civil).

As a practising solicitor in the Republic of Ireland, Ian is able to assist clients on all applicable aspects of GB, Irish and EU law.

Ian works with clients and other lawyers based in the UK, Ireland, Europe and around the world.

He is a regular speaker at food law events and is the author of two food law books.

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Food

As a very experienced food lawyer, Ian provides regulatory and compliance advice and also represents clients in courts and tribunals in relation to a wide range of food law matters including; food safety and hygiene, animal welfare (including at the time of killing), food information, health and nutrition claims, food supplements, borderline products, traceability, product withdrawals and recalls, official controls and enforcement powers.

Examples of Ian’s work:

Providing advice in respect of:

  • Food information obligations requirements
  • Food supplements
  • A Europe-wide food recall
  • The use of nutrition and health claims
  • The provision of food information to consumers
  • The requirements for food and feed registration
  • Identification of the food business operator
  • Enforcement action in respect of local authority food businesses
  • Changes to GB law post-Brexit (e.g. the Bread and Flour Regulations)
  • Umbrella names in connection with food supplements and medicinal products
  • GB legal provisions in a pan-European project
  • Enforcement action taken against a slaughterhouse
  • Environmental claims for a food product
  • Imports of honey refused entry to the UK
  • Proposed imports of food into GB
  • A slaughterhouse being investigated for multiple alleged animal welfare issues
  • A large-scale alleged fraud involving the mislabelling of foodstuffs

Providing representation on behalf of a slaughterhouse in the First-tier Tribunal and in the Upper Tribunal.

Defending food law prosecutions (e.g. hygiene, safety and animal welfare).

Consumer

Ian is very experienced in providing advice in respect of the regulation and compliance of non-food consumer products. This includes general advice on product requirements such as labelling as well as specific labelling and safety provisions.

Examples of Ian’s work:

  • Advising on the legal requirements for cosmetics
  • Advising on the legal requirements for detergents
  • Unit pricing obligations for detergent products
  • Assisting a client negotiate a product recall
  • Advising on the provisions of the textile regulations
  • Advising on the legal provisions applicable to the descriptor “vegan leather”
  • Representing a high street retailer prosecuted for under age sales

Inquests & inquiries

Ian is currently representing one of the main Core Participants in the long-running Public Inquiry into the Grenfell Tower fire.

Recommendations

"A very experienced and able operator…Very knowledgeable in food safety and hygiene"

― Legal 500 [2022]

"A true food safety expert, he has a grasp of pitching his in-depth, technical knowledge in the most appropriate commercial context."

― Legal 500 [2020]

"A highly capable barrister and noted food law specialist, known for representing individuals, local and national companies and government bodies in food safety and trading standards cases".

"A very experienced and able operator...Very knowledgeable in food safety and hygiene."

― Chambers & Partners UK Bar Guide [2018]

"He is extremely user-friendly and makes advocacy look easy."

― Legal 500 [2017]

“He has a wealth of knowledge and experience.”

― Legal 500 [2016]

"Extremely thorough, pragmatic and sensitive to the clients needs, both financial and legal."

― Legal 500 [2015]
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Appointments

  • Visiting Professor, Ulster University, Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
  • Elected Fellow of the Society of Food Hygiene and Technology

Publications

  • Author of a Practical Guide to Food Law (now in its second edition)
  • Author of Covid 19 and the Law Relating to Food in the UK and Republic of Ireland
  • Ireland Country correspondent for the European Food and Feed Law Review

Memberships

  • Food Law Group
  • Society of Food Hygiene and Technology
  • Institution of Occupational Safety and Health
  • Food Safety Professionals Association (Ireland)
  • Bar of England and Wales
  • Law Society of Ireland

Education

  • Wolverhampton University (LLB (Hons)
  • Inns of Court School of Law
  • Law Society of Ireland

Latest news

24th January 2022

A Practical Guide to Food Law in the United Kingdom – new edition

Written by Ian Thomas, this new edition highlights, and provides a reference point for, some of the major changes to food law in Great Britain following exit from the EU.

26th November 2021

Discounts of 25% on books by Six Pump Court authors

Today (Friday), Law Brief will be running a Black Friday discount of 25% for all books available on their website.

4th May 2021

Ian Thomas awarded the title of Visiting Professor

Ian Thomas has been appointed to the position of Visiting Professor attached to the Faculty of Life and Health Sciences at Ulster University.

15th July 2020

New book on Covid-19 and the law relating to food now available

This new book written by Ian Thomas examines the significant impact that Covid-19 has had on the food industry and food businesses and outlines the changing regulatory landscape.

23rd April 2020

David Travers QC and Ian Thomas speaking at remote UK Food Law Conference next week

David Travers QC and Ian Thomas will be speaking at the UK Food Law Conference next week and discounted tickets are available.

26th October 2018

Six Pump Court wins Health & Safety Set of the Year at Chambers UK Bar Awards

Last night at the Chambers UK Bar Awards, Six Pump Court was delighted to be named as the Health & Safety Set of the Year.

1st August 2018

New book on food law by Ian Thomas

Six Pump Court is pleased to announce the publication of "A Practical Guide to the Law Relating to Food", written by Ian Thomas.

25th May 2018

Regulatory Law Conference 2018 (Birmingham)

Six Pump Court will present a Regulatory Law Conference on 13th July in Birmingham.

5th December 2017

Ian Thomas elected a Fellow of the Society of Food Hygiene and Technology

Ian Thomas has been elected a Fellow of the Society of Food Hygiene and Technology (SOFHT).

6th October 2017

Litigation and Dispute Resolution Annual Conference 2017

Kent Law Society together with Six Pump Court are hosting the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Annual Conference 2017 which will take place on 21st November in Rochester.

10th May 2017

CTSI Conference 2017 – Sentencing in Food Cases

Members of the Six Pump Court Chambers Food Law Team will host a session at the CTSI Conference taking place this week in Harrogate.

14th June 2016

Consumer Law team to present at the annual CTSI Conference next week

Members of the Six Pump Court Consumer Law Team will be speaking at the Trading Standards Institute Conference 2016 next week at the International...

15th March 2016

Six Pump Court hosts Health & Safety Prosecutions seminar for LBLA practitioners

On Monday, Six Pump Court Chambers hosted a seminar for London Boroughs Legal Alliance (LBLA) practitioners on ‘Health and Safety Prosecutions’. At this event,...

4th March 2016

Ian Thomas provides some insight into the new Sentencing Guidelines for regulatory offences

The new sentencing guidelines came into force on 1 February 2016 for the sentencing of offences relating to health and safety, corporate manslaughter and...

13th August 2015

Ian Thomas to speak at the International Conference on Food Safety and Regulatory Measures

Ian Thomas will speak at the keynote forum of the International Conference on Food Safety and Regulatory Measures taking place between 17th and 19th...

24th June 2015

Consumer Law team speaking at the annual CTSI Conference

Members of the Six Pump Court Consumer Law Team will be speaking at the Chartered Trading Standards Institute Conference 2015. David Travers QC and...

1st May 2015

Ian Thomas speaks at Food Law Conference

Ian Thomas recently spoke at the Food Law Conference 2015 - A Review of the Latest Developments.  In his presentation, Ian spoke on 'Food...

4th October 2014

Ian Thomas joins Six Pump Court

Chambers is pleased to announce that specialist Regulatory Law barrister Ian Thomas has returned to practice at Six Pump Court. Ian Thomas was called to the Bar...

Events

16th September 2020

Webinar: Covid-19 and the law relating to food – protecting the health and safety of consumers

On Wednesday 16th September at 4.30pm the Health & Safety Lawyers Association and Six Pump Court will host a webinar entitled "Covid-19 and the law relating to food – protecting the health and safety of consumers".

Contact my clerks

Ryan Barrow

Ryan Barrow

First Junior Clerk
Michael Hearn

Michael Hearn

Second Junior Clerk