Any business that serves or prepares food should ensure that food hygiene and safety are an absolute priority. Preventing outbreaks of food poisoning is not only essential in terms of public health, but also in terms of a business’s chances of survival.
Most cases of food poisoning are relatively mild, but for those who are very young or old or have compromised immune systems, food poisoning can have devastating and even fatal consequences. If a business is shown to be the source of an outbreak or guilty of breaching food safety regulations, prosecution, fines and even jail sentences can ensue.
The Agency’s new Food Hygiene Rating System will help consumers to make an informed choice about the establishments they purchase food from and is a clear response to the concerns of the public about food safety and food poisoning.
Reputations could depend on these new ratings that must be displayed to the public. Businesses could rightly fail or succeed depending on their compliance or lack of compliance with hygiene regulations. Employers should therefore ensure that all members of staff have received food safety training and understand and respect the principles of food hygiene.