Published on 14 June 2022
Stratford-on-Avon District Council is reminding food businesses across the District to focus on food safety and that their team is here to support businesses improve standards and keep consumers safe.
Food safety officers inspect food businesses to check that they follow food hygiene and safety laws so that the food is safe to eat. They give the business a rating from zero (urgent improvement required) to five (hygiene standards are very good).
Inspections cover food hygiene and safety. The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS) helps consumers choose where to eat out or shop for food by giving them clear information about the businesses' hygiene standards.
Nationally, there are estimated to be around 2.4 million cases of foodborne illness a year, and common food poisoning bacteria include Campylobacter and Salmonella. Two million people in the UK live with a food allergy, 600,000 people have coeliac disease, and others have food intolerances.
Food safety risks can be reduced by food businesses taking action on cleaning, pest control, food safety management and addressing food substitution issues which can cause risks for people with allergies and intolerances, and other vulnerable persons.
Cllr Christopher Kettle, Community Protection Portfolio said: "Good food safety is better business sense. As we see visitors returning to the District after COVID it is really important that we continue to focus on food safety standards in Stratford-on-Avon District.
"The majority of food businesses in Stratford-on-Avon District are of a high standard; however, Food and Safety Officers have seen a decline in food hygiene in certain areas, and this is just a reminder of the standards expected as businesses reopen, recruit and train new members of staff, or for those starting a new business venture.
"The food inspection team at the District Council can and do support food businesses improve where necessary. The District Council is here to maintain food safety standards and we're reminding businesses a visit from food safety inspector can happen at any time."
Michael Jackson, FSA's Head of Regulatory Compliance said: "Many food businesses already meet good standards of hygiene, and we know this is important to consumers who want to feel confident that the food they choose won't make them ill.
"Food safety issues like food poisoning and incidents of undeclared allergens, can cause unnecessary suffering for individuals, as well as impacting on their families. We work in collaboration with Stratford-on-Avon District Council who support businesses and help them understand the regulatory requirements."
Food businesses in Stratford-on-Avon District must be registered with Stratford-on-Avon District Council.
The FHRS rating shows how well the business is doing overall, based on standards found at the time of inspection. The ratings can be found online and on stickers which are displayed at business premises.
The percentage of food hygiene inspections, from January to March 2022, compared to previous scores show, 74% of food premises / businesses have maintained their food hygiene standard, with 4% improving and 22% seeing a decrease in their food hygiene standards.
More information for small businesses on food safety management procedures and food hygiene regulations is available on food.gov.uk
About the Food Standards Agency
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is an independent government department working to protect public health and consumers' wider interests in relation to food in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Stratford-on-Avon District Council
Elizabeth House, Church Street,
Tel: 01789 267575