Food Hygiene Rating Scheme
Hygiene ratings for food businesses in north Norfolk are available to view at the Food Standards Agency (FSA).There is also the ability to download a 'Food Hygiene Standards' app, free from iTunes, or from the Google play store, so you can access FHRS ratings on the move.
The scheme is a FSA / local authority partnership to help consumers choose where to eat out or shop for food. It does this by giving information about the hygiene standards in food outlets when they are inspected. You can search the ratings for food businesses provided by local authorities taking part in the FHRS in England, Northern Ireland and Wales or the Food Hygiene Information Scheme in Scotland.
A short video produced by the FSA explaining the national FHRS can be found on YouTube:
The objectives of the scheme are:
- To be a good advertisement for businesses that comply with food hygiene law - a good food hygiene rating is good for business.
- To provide further incentive for businesses to meet hygiene regulations.
- To give businesses room to improve their rating.
- To enable you to make an informed choice about where you choose to eat out or shop for food, as it gives an idea of what's going on behind the scenes in the kitchen.
- To give you different ways of viewing the rating - the rating can be viewed by checking the sticker in the window, the certificate on display inside the premises or by visiting the FSA online.
- It supports local businesses by promoting the high standards in north Norfolk to a wider audience.
- Local authorities, consumers, and the food industry all told the FSA in a major public consultation in 2008 that they wanted a single national scheme.
- The distinctive FHRS branding is based on the findings of research with consumers about what they find easiest to understand and use.
- A single scheme operating in England, Wales and Northern Ireland helps to ensure consistency for businesses and clarity for consumers across the country. Businesses have reassurance that they are being treated fairly and consistently with their local competitors more widely.
After a premises has been inspected an overall number rating, from zero (the worst) to five (the best), is awarded. This is based on food hygiene standards found at the time of inspection in the following three areas:
- Compliance with food hygiene and safety procedures - for example, how hygienically the food is prepared, cooked, re-heated, cooled and stored.
- Compliance with structural requirements - for example, the condition of the structure of the buildings - the cleanliness, layout, lighting, ventilation and other facilities.
- Confidence in food safety management control/procedures - for example, how the business manages and records what it does to make sure the food is safe.
A business can be given one of these hygiene ratings:
Please note that the rating does not reflect the quality of food or the standard of service provided to customers.
Some low risk businesses which are not generally recognised by consumers as being food businesses are 'exempt' from the scope of the FHRS. Certain establishments operating from private addresses, childminders for example, are also exempt and their details will not be published.
Further details on how the rating is calculated can be found here.
In order to ensure that the scheme is fair to businesses, it includes a number of safeguards. They include an appeals procedure, a 'right to reply', and an opportunity to request a re-visit when improvements have been made in order to be reassessed for a new rating.
Further information for food businesses on these different safeguards can be found in the FSA's leaflet.