Seventy-five per cent of all the food businesses in North Kesteven have scored the highest possible rating for food hygiene.
Of the 793 ratings issued by NKDC to businesses on the quality of their hygiene and food handling, 590 scored a five and 737 (93 per cent) score a four or a five. In total 97.9 per cent are rated three or above, resulting in NK ranking tenth amongst the top 38 local authorities in the country for best compliance ratings.
Coun Richard Wright, executive board member with responsibility for environmental health matters, said: “This reflects well on the diligence of business owners and the Council’s environmental health team locally and can give consumers confidence in the standards of the food they buy and eat when dining out or picking up a take-away”.
These latest figures extend a continual rise over recent years as the council works hard to encourage better practices among local food retailers, producers, caterers and establishments.
Every business is encouraged to display their Food Hygiene Rating on a black and green sticker – and proudly so in most cases. If it cannot be seen you have a right to ask, or to vote with your feet if you don’t have confidence in what you can’t see.
Food hygiene ratings focus on what happens behind the scenes, rather than what is presented on your plate. Officers consider the cleanliness of the kitchen, look for any contamination issues, stock control, legal obligations and attention to detail in record keeping and documentation.
To search for a business’ food rating visit www.food.gov.uk/ratings
They range from a zero – meaning that urgent improvement is necessary, through to a five – meaning ‘very good’ compliance with legal requirements, which is a level al businesses should be able to achieve irrespective of size, simply by complying with food hygiene laws.
“With all but 17 of our food businesses rated three or above – showing broad compliance with the requirements – we know there are many quality options for dining out or buying food in, we of course will be working closely with these premises to achieve standards expected by the public” said Cllr Wright.
“The ratings scheme makes it easier for everyone to choose places where food hygiene is taken seriously and to have confidence in those choices. As a good rating is also good for business, it is in everyone’s interest to highlight their excellence.”
The latest ratings for takeaways, pubs, restaurants, clubs and cafes are also printed in the winter edition of newsnk, the District Councils residents’. newsletter.