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Food hygiene rating scheme - business information

Food Hygiene Ratings are assessed via routine food premises inspection visits (statutory inspections) which follow the "Food Law Code of Practice (England)"

At the inspection, the Environrmental Health Officer will allocate scores for:

  • The level of compliance with food hygiene and safety procedures
  • The level of complaince with structural requirements
  • Confidence in management

These three scores will then enable the officer to rate the hygiene standards on a scale of 0-5. A score of 5 will be the highest level indicating very good standards of food hygiene and a score of 0 will indicate that urgent improvement is necessary.

How to achieve the highest score

In order to achieve the best score possible, you will need to ensure your business meets the high standards in the following three areas:

  • 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 the food safe (a documented food safety management system based on HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control point)

In order to help you achieve a high rating please use the FHRS guidance checklist below in "downloads". If you are able to answer "yes" to all the points on the checklist and the Environmental Health Officer is able to find evidence of this at inspection, then you should be able to meet a score of three "generally satisfactory" or above.

Most businesses require a fully documented food safety management system and need to show that it is being operated effectively. If you do not have a fully documented system, then you may only reach a score of 1 out of a possible 5.

What to do if you disagree with your hygiene rating

If you are not happy with the food hygien rating you have been awarded, you should contact the inspecting officer to discuss your concerns. If the issue cannot be resolved at that stage, you also have three further options to consider:

Your right to appeal

Please use the appeal form below and return it to the Lead Officer for Food Safety at Environmental Health.

You have 21 days (including weekends and bank holidays) from the date of receipt of the notification letter to lodge and appeal. The Lead Officer for Food will review your rating and communicate the outcome of your appeal top you within 21 days

Your right to request a re-visit

As the food business operator of the establishment you have a right to request a re-visit and you can make this at any time after the statutory inspection provided that you have made the required improvements. You must provide details of the improvements made with your request, including supporting evidence where appropriate.

If we consider that you have provided sufficient evidence that the required improvements have been made, and provided that a three month "stand still" period has passed since the statutory inspection, the local authority will make an unannounced visit.

The Environmental Health Officer will give you a "new" food hygiene rating based on the level of compliance that is found at the time of the re-visit - you should be aware that your rating could go up, down or remian the same. To make a request for a revisit, please use the form below and return it to the food safety officer who inspected your premises.

Your right to reply

The purpose of the right to reply is to enable you to give an explanation of subsequent actions that have been taken to make the required improvements as detailed in the inspection letter, or to explain mitigation for the circumstances at the time of inspection.

It is not for making complaints or for criticising the scheme or food safety officer. If you wish to use this Right to Reply please use the printable form and return it to the Environmental Health Officer who undertook your inspection.

your comments will be reviewed by the Environmental Health Officer before being published online. There will be a statement that will highlight that the accuracy of your comments has not been verifified by local authority officers.

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