Food Hygiene Rating Scheme Information

Food Hygiene Rating Scheme: information for businesses

Food businesses in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (other than very low risk) are given a Food Hygiene Rating each time they are inspected, as part of a national scheme run by the Food Standards Agency and local authorities. The rating is published on the Food Standard Agency website and the business is provided with a sticker to display it at the premises.

Ratings go from ‘0’ to ‘5’. ‘0’ means that urgent improvement is necessary and ‘5’ means that very good hygiene standards were found. The rating is based on:

  • how hygienically the food is handled
  • the condition of the premises, including cleanliness
  • how food safety is managed

A high rating is something to be proud of! The Food Standards Agency gives ideas on how you can promote your rating.

To make sure that the scheme is fair to businesses, it has a number of safeguards:

  • an 'appeal', within 21 days, if the business does not agree with their rating
  • a 'right to reply' which allows businesses to feedback comments to be posted on the Food Standards Agency website
  • an 'opportunity to request a re-visit' and re-score when improvements have been made

Full details of these safeguards are provided on the Food Standards Agency website, including the relevant forms which need to be completed and sent to BCP Council.

Is there a fee for a re-visit?

Yes, there is a charge for a requested re-score visit of £126.50. The re-score visit will be carried out within 3 months of receipt of this payment.

Publishing the rating early

For businesses in England and Wales, the business owner or manager can request that a rating is published before the end of the appeal period. This request must be made in writing to the council. You must include:

  • details of who you are
  • the name and address of the business
  • your contact information
  • the date of the inspection
  • the rating given

We will review the request and will usually publish the rating early.