Erewash Borough Council operate the Food Standards Agency's national food hygiene rating scheme (FHRS) for food premises across the Borough. The scheme is designed to help consumers choose where to eat out or shop for food. It does this by giving information about the hygiene standards in food outlets at the time they are inspected to check compliance with legal requirements. 

This is a national scheme so you can check the rating of all the places you visit at the Food Standards Agency website.


How are food hygiene ratings calculated?

The frequency of planned inspections of a food business is risk based and depends on the type of business and its inherent risk, the level of hygiene management control and the previous record of compliance. A risk rating score dictates the frequency that a business will be inspected. Inspection frequency varies from six to twenty four months.

The food hygiene rating is based on the risk rating and reflects the inspection findings. At a food safety inspection, an officer will check how well the food business is meeting the law.

Three areas are assessed, these are:

  • how hygienically the food is handled – how it is prepared, cooked, cooled, stored, and what measures are taken to prevent food being contaminated with bacteria. This is the level of (current) compliance with food hygiene and safety procedures (including food handling practices and procedures, and temperature control);

  • the condition of the structure of the premises including cleanliness, layout, lighting, ventilation, equipment and other facilities.  This is level of (current) compliance with structural requirements;

  • The management and recording of what is done to make sure food is safe using a system like Safer food, better business (SFBB). This is called confidence in management/control procedures.

A score for each individual area and a total score, which is the sum of the three individual scores is given. Officers use Chapter 5 of the Food Law Code of Practice to determine the score. Typically, the higher the score in each of the above categories, the lower the food hygiene rating.

There are 6 FHRS ratings - these are taken from the 3 elements of the 'risk score' score in Chapter 5 of the Food Law Code of Practice.

Total Annex 5 scores 0 - 15 20 25 - 30 35 - 40 45 - 50 >50
Additional scoring factor No individual score greater than 5 No individual score greater than 10 No individual score greater than 10 No individual score greater than 15 No individual score greater than 20 -
Food hygiene rating 5 4 3 2 1 0
Descriptor Very good Good Generally satisfactory Improvement necessary Major improvement necessary Urgent improvement necessary

The rating given depends on how well the business does overall – the total score. It also depends on the area(s) that need improving the most - the business may do better in some areas and less well in others. To get the top rating, you must score no more than 5 in each of the three areas. All businesses should be able to get the top rating. A new rating is given as at each planned inspection.


How can a business improve its food hygiene rating?

To get the best possible rating a food business can:

  • Look at the last food hygiene inspection report to check that all the actions needed to meet legal requirements have been undertaken.  

  • At the next inspection, if the top rating is not given ask about the improvements needed to get a better rating.

  • Make sure that staff to comply fully with all aspects of food hygiene law at all times.


How is a food business notified of its food hygiene rating?

The Council works to the Food Standards Agency 'Brand Standard' for operating the scheme.  As part of this standard  the Council aim to notify the business of their food hygiene rating in writing within 14 days of the date of the inspection. This notification will include an inspection report and a FHRS sticker showing the hygiene rating awarded.

If no appeal is made against the hygiene rating, the rating will appear on the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme website after 3 weeks of the date of the letter. The business should only display the sticker issued by the council of the current rating.


Right to Reply

A FBOs also has a 'right to reply'. This enables the FBO to give an explanation of subsequent actions that have been taken to rectify non-compliances, or mitigation for the circumstances at the time of the inspection that may have led to a low food hygiene rating. The 'right to reply' is not to complain about or criticise an inspecting officer. A 'right to reply' must be submitted using a 'right to reply' form issued by the Food Standards Agency. Details can be found in the FSA 'Brand Standard' Section 7.

Requesting a Re-score visit

An establishment with a rating of '5' does not need a re-inspection as this is the highest rating possible.

If you are rated 4,3,2,1,or 0 and have made improvements to your business, you can pay for a visit to be carried out before your next planned inspection. The Officer will check the works you have carried out and if applicable give you a new rating. These non-statutory rescoring visits:- 

• are subject to a charge of £175 which must be paid before a visit is made .
• will be unannounced and carried out within 12 weeks of receipt/ or clearance of payment.

You can request and pay for as many visits as necessary but your re-rating will only be successful if you have taken action to make improvements to your business. It is important to note that this new rating could go down if improvements have not been made or if other contraventions are noted at the time of the visit.

Make sure you have made the improvements detailed in your last report of inspection or letter. You can contact the officer to seek further information or clarification by telephone.

To request a visit you will need to:-

  • Complete and submit a food hygiene rating revisit request form available from environmental health or on the FSA website at this link re-inspection form
  • Make a payment of £175 either by contacting Environmental Health on 0115 907 2244 ext.3820 and advising that you wish to make a payment for a food hygiene rating scheme revisit or send a cheque payable to ‘Erewash Borough Council’ with your completed form.

If you withdraw the application before a visit is made a minimum charge of £20 applies to cover administration costs. No refund will be given once a visit has been made.

More details can be found on the Food Standards Agency website in the FSA 'Brand Standard' Section 8.

Appeals

Before making an appeal, business owners or managers should contact the council's food safety officer first to understand why the rating was given. If the business owner or manager still thinks that the rating is unfair or wrong, they can appeal in writing to the council. Details on how to do this are included in the notification of rating letter sent to the business.

If an appeal is still necessary this must be made in writing within 21 days of being notified of the food hygiene rating score for their business. Details can be found in the FSA 'Brand Standard' Section 6


Contact Us

Environmental Health
Merlin House, Merlin Way, Ilkeston. DE74RA

Tel: 0115 907 2244 ext 3820
email: environmentalhealth@erewash.gov.uk