IMPROVED FOOD SAFETY IN HYNDBURN

As of 24th May 2018 the Council’s drive to improve food safety standards in Hyndburn has resulted in 92% of food businesses now being compliant with the Food Standards Agency Food Hygiene Ratings Scheme, with 84% of them achieving a 4 or 5 food hygiene rating.

Cllr Paul Cox, Cabinet Member for Food Safety and Deputy Leader of the Council, welcomed the news, saying; “This is wonderful news. We’ve added additional resources to drive up compliance and these improved figures are a result of the Council taking significant strides to improve food hygiene performance in the Borough.  Last year our Food & Safety team ran a successful series of free Food Safety and Allergen workshops aimed at non-compliant premises. These workshops were attended by 88 businesses and we have also carried out 30 one to one coaching sessions. Another great outcome is that the team has for the last two years completed 100% of inspections, and since the start of this year 54 food outlets in Hyndburn have gained the highest food hygiene rating of five. This brings to the total number of five rated food businesses to 395.”

The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS) helps you choose where to eat out or shop for food by telling you how seriously the business takes their food hygiene standards.

The scheme is run by local authorities in England, Northern Ireland and Wales and applies to restaurants, pubs, cafes, takeaways, hotels, supermarkets and other food shops.

Each business is given their hygiene rating when it is inspected by a food safety officer from the business’s local authority. The food safety officer inspecting the business checks how well the business is meeting the law by looking at:

  • how hygienically the food is handled – how it is prepared, cooked, re-heated, cooled and stored
  • the condition of the structure of the buildings – the cleanliness, layout, lighting, ventilation and other facilities
  • how the business manages and records what it does to make sure food is safe

At the end of the inspection, the business is given one of the six ratings from 0-5. The top rating of ‘5’ means that the business was found to have ‘very good’ hygiene standards. Any business should be able to reach this top rating.

Cllr Cox concluded; “Whilst we’re happy to see a big improvement to 92% compliance, we will carry on the hard work to drive up compliance, and our Food & Safety team are continuing with revisits to work with the remaining 8% of businesses to achieve compliance. We will use enforcement options where necessary to ensure food safety across the Borough and last year we took action against non-compliant premises which resulted in 5 voluntary closures, we also served 21 premises with Food Hygiene Improvement Notices and issued 301 written warnings.”