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More than half of food businesses in Wales receive top food hygiene ratings

Article Date: 2015-03-04

A new Food Standards Agency (FSA) report has shown 56% of food businesses in Wales have been awarded the highest rating.

Top food hygiene ratings have been awarded to more than half of food businesses in Wales.

A report by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) published today detailed the UK’s first statutory scheme’s year of operation after legislation was passed in Wales to make it compulsory for businesses to display their food hygiene ratings.

Figures in the report show 56% of food businesses achieved a five rating, classed as very good, from November 2013 to November 2014.

There has been an 11% increase of five-rated premises in Wales since the food hygiene ratings were introduced.

Welsh Government deputy health minister Vaughan Gething said: "Wales has led the way in the UK by introducing a statutory food hygiene rating system.

"I am pleased that the scheme - the first of its kind in the UK - has been so successful in the first 12 months of operation.

"The FSA report confirms that food hygiene standards have continued to improve at food establishments in Wales, and that mandatory display of the ratings has played an important part in this.

"It also shows the scheme has provided important information for consumers deciding where to eat out or buy food.

"While it is disappointing that some businesses with low ratings have failed to display their rating stickers, I am reassured that local authorities are tackling this and are continuing to do so."

The percentage of food businesses receiving ratings which mean improvement is required fell by 7% during the last year from around 14% to 7%, with the number of businesses with a zero, the lowest rating, falling from 0.6% to 0.3%.

Nina Purcell, director of FSA, said: "The report focuses on food businesses compliance with food hygiene law since the introduction of the statutory scheme.

"It has been a motivating factor in raising food hygiene standards which in turn benefits commuters.

"Local authorities are to be commended for their role and commitment in delivering the scheme.”

The non-statutory food hygiene ratings scheme was introduced in 2010, but businesses were not made to display their ratings until the Food Hygiene Rating (Wales) Act 2013 made it compulsory for all food establishments and businesses to publicly display their food hygiene rating on their premises, from November 2013.

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