Food Hygiene Changes Coming To Northern Ireland
st October 2016, food businesses in Northern Ireland will be required by law to display their food hygiene rating sticker at their premises. This will apply to all food businesses who sell directly to the public including restaurants, takeaways, supermarkets, delicatessens, mobile caterers, schools, hospitals and residential care homes.
Fiona Sinclair with food safety consultancy STS says: “This new law means that businesses who don’t achieve the top 5* hygiene rating will not be able to hide this. Knowing that the public can easily see food hygiene scores will incentivise businesses to achieve the highest rating, which can only be a good thing. It also allows customers to make an informed choice on where they eat, based on the food hygiene ratings.”
She continues: “As long as a business complies with all existing food hygiene legislation and follows good practice it should be easy for them to reach a 5* rating. Each business is responsible for ensuring that they provide safe food to their customers and having the right procedures and processes in place will help them achieve this.”
Food businesses in Wales have been required to display their food hygiene ratings since 2013 and will be required to include them on promotional literature from November 2016. Currently businesses in England are not required to display their scores, although they often do so voluntarily – especially those which achieve the 5* rating. Calls for mandatory display are growing in England as food hygiene and safety come more to the forefront of consumers’ minds.
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