May 01, 2011

The Importance of Food Hygiene

 Food Hygiene is such an important topic and one which i thought i would highlight as it's a very useful topic, and has not only helped me within business, but also when choosing restaurants and venues.

Love Cupcake & Food Hygiene 
Love Cupcake are proud to be inspected by our local authority, our most recent inspection being in November on our new premises in Rayleigh, where we were awarded an excellent score of 5! Food hygiene is very important to us here so we were very proud that our score reflected this, so of course we're very pleased that this information is now available for everyone to see. We also hold a food hygiene certificate (Level 2 for Caterers) from the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health. Here's a sneaky peak at our lovely clean kitchen....

The Scheme
The nationally recognised scheme is run by the Food Standards Agency although there are many similar smaller schemes if your local authority is not part of it yet (if you are unsure you may check with your local council to see how you can view food hygiene scores/records) The food hygiene rating scheme for our local authority and other Essex areas launched on 14th February 2011. If you haven't heard of it before then i shall explain further.

The scheme is run by local authorities and the Food Standards Agency and helps us choose where to eat out or shop for food by giving information about the hygiene standards in restaurants, pubs, cafés, takeaways, hotels and other places you eat, as well as supermarkets,other food shops and home food businesses, such as Love Cupcake!

The scheme also encourages businesses to improve hygiene standards by making records readily available to anyone using the Food Standards Agency website, so now if you are eating out, or ordering food or cakes, you can check a company hygiene rating here:

How are ratings worked out?
A food safety officer inspects a business to check that it meets the requirements of food hygiene law. The officer is from the local authority where the business is located.
At the inspection, the officer will check:
  • how hygienically the food is handled – how it is prepared, cooked, re-heated, cooled and stored
  • the condition of the structure of the buildings – the cleanliness, layout, lighting, ventilation and other facilities
  • how the business manages and records what it does to make sure food is safe
The hygiene standards found at the time of inspection are then rated on a scale. At the bottom of the scale is ‘0’ – this means urgent improvement is required. At the top of the scale is ‘5’ – this means the hygiene standards are very good.

The rating given shows how well the business does overall. The business may do better in some areas and less well in others and the rating takes this into account. This includes those areas that need improving the most.

The officer will explain to the person who owns or manages the business what improvements need to be made and what action they can take to improve their hygiene rating.

What do the ratings mean?
The food hygiene rating reflects the hygiene standards found on the date of inspection by a food safety officer from the business’s local authority.
A business can be given one of these ratings:

Food hygiene rating is '0': Urgent improvement necessary Food hygiene rating is '1': Major improvement necessary Food hygiene rating is '2': Improvement necessary

Food hygiene rating is '3': Generally satisfactory Food hygiene rating is '4': Good Food hygiene rating is '5': Very good

The hygiene standards found at the time of inspection are rated on a scale. At the bottom of the scale is ‘0’ – this means urgent improvement is required. At the top of the scale is ‘5’ – this means the hygiene standards are very good.
A rating shows you how well the business is meeting the requirements of food hygiene law. It gives you an idea of what’s going on in the kitchen, or behind closed doors, so you can choose where you eat or buy food.

Does a food business have to show its rating?  

No, so if you see a business without a hygiene rating sticker or certificate, you’ll have to decide if you want to eat or buy food from there without knowing the hygiene standards. 

Putting a hygiene rating on show is a good advertisement for businesses that meet the requirements of food hygiene law.

A good food hygiene rating is good for business - don't be afraid to ask a food business their hygiene rating before you eat out, or order from them - you could receive more than you bargained for in the form of.

Here is a really useful video by the Food Standards Agency to help highlight the important of these scores


  1. Food Hygiene Certification is really important for people who are dealing with food such as caterers, retailers and manufacturers. This course is designed to give knowledge in different aspects of food safety and hygiene, proper cooking, and handling of foods to maintain food-safe environment. So if you want to pursue your career dealing with catering, bakeshops, restaurants, and cafes then this is the ideal training for you.

  2. Awareness on food safety is among the best campaigns that could help people learn the importance of having a proper handling and preparation of food for themselves and their family. A lot of food hygiene certification course have been offered online, but this is not enough. Those who were able to to take such training or certification should teach those who are not yet aware with the importance of it so that their daily food is safe for them to eat and that they could maintain a healthy living.

  3. Excellent information provided by hygiene certificate level 2

  4. Its really informative blog. "Food Hygiene is one of the most important factor. Bad food practices cause a risk to the health of the consumer and possibly a public health threat also. Apart from food poisoning would be allergies and personal choice diet through cross contamination of meats on vegetables."