The new food hygiene rating system that is currently being rolled out by the Food Standards Agency has been designed to inform consumers about the conditions in which their food is prepared and handled. This allows them to choose to go elsewhere if the establishment scores badly, thus reducing their risk of food poisoning.
Inspections of restaurants, bars and eateries in Fylde, Lancashire, began last year and have revealed that very few of them provide cause for concern. Almost 93% have scored at least three stars out of five, which indicates that their hygiene practices are considered satisfactory.
This must be reassuring for the residents of Fylde; they will be able to choose to eat safely thanks to the scheme, which, it is also hoped, will encourage those who scored badly to improve their standards and therefore their score.
The scores will be displayed clearly in all establishments that have been assessed, showing a score out of a possible five, with 0 being the lowest and 5 the highest. Food safety training equips those preparing or handling food with the skills and knowledge to do so hygienically.