Fenland food businesses urged to highlight ‘High 5s’ success

Top notch: food businesses celebrating at Fenland Hall

Top notch: food businesses celebrating at Fenland Hall - Credit: Archant

Food businesses that are awarded high scores for their hygiene standards under a nationally recognised scheme should do more to publicise their success.

It will help set them apart from their competitors and attract more customers.

That was the advice from Marcia Nightingale from the Food Standards Agency (FSA), speaking at a celebration event for local businesses that had gained a “High 5” mark, the top score under the national Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS).

Ms Nightingale said: “More consumers than ever are checking food hygiene ratings displayed by businesses. This allows them to choose those with a good rating and avoid the ones that don’t make the grade

“Our research shows that over a third of businesses displaying their rating at their premises and on their websites report a positive impact – an improved reputation, increased customer confidence or more customers.”

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Forty-two top-scoring businesses attended the event held in Fenland Hall, March, earlier this month (May). Each one was presented with a “Fenland’s High 5s” certificate.

Congratulating them, Cllr Mike Cornwell, the council’s Cabinet member responsible for environmental health, said: “Your success is down to your hard work and commitment to ensuring that high standards of hygiene are maintained in your business. That is why you deserve this High 5s accolade.”

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The FHRS assessments are carried out by Fenland District Council’s environmental health officers during unannounced inspections.

There are six levels of rating from 0 (urgent improvement necessary) to 5 (very good).

Businesses are given a sticker showing their score which they are encouraged to display prominently within their premises.

The FHRS has three main aims: to provide a fair and open mechanism for assessing businesses’ food hygiene standards, to encourage consistent high standards and thus reduce the incidence of food-borne illness, and to allow consumers to make informed choices about where they buy food.

A total of 134 Fenland food businesses have achieved the top rating since the FHRS scheme was adopted by Fenland District Council in 2011.

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