Food Hygiene Ratings

Torridge District Council works to the National Food Hygiene Rating Scheme. You will see the 0-5 stickers on the windows and doors of food premises across the Torridge District.  The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme is a Food Standards Agency/Local Authority partnership scheme whereby the hygiene ratings of food businesses are displayed to the public.  Torridge food business ratings are on the national website, alongside ratings across the country.

Torridge in top quartile for safe food businesses by The Telegraph placed the Torridge Food and Safety Team 53rd out of 405 local authorities.



pdf icon self assessment checklist [200kb]
pdf icon Food Hygiene A Guide for Business [489kb]

 Links to this page:  

Scope of the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme 
Hygiene Ratings explained                               
Gaining a high hygiene rating
Displaying the Hygiene Rating
Appealing against a Hygiene Rating
Requesting a Food Hygiene Rating revisit
Right to Reply
Benefits for Businesses
Benefits for Consumers

Scope of the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme

The scope of the FHRS extends to establishments supplying food direct to consumers. This includes retailers, restaurants, cafes, takeaways, sandwich shops and other places where people eat food prepared outside of the home.

Further information relating to the scope of the scheme is available to download from the right hand side of this page.

 Hygiene Ratings Scores 

The scores are based on Annex 5 of the Food Standards Agency, Food Law Code of Practice. The score will be related to food hygiene procedures, structural requirements and our confidence in how you manage food safety.


Gaining a 5 (very good) hygiene rating

Sticker 5 Score

In order to achieve a high rating the Food Business Operator (FBO) must be able to demonstrate a very high standard of food safety management and be compliant with food hygiene legislation.

Scores are given for the following three elements:

  1. Documented food safety procedures in place and up-to-date 
  2. Compliance with structural requirements of Annex II,
  3. Confidence in how you manage food safety (includes history of compliance)

Food hygiene and safety Procedures

The FBO must demonstrate and/or provide evidence of:

  • safe food preparation, storage & contamination controls
  • food handlers exercise good personal hygiene 
  • food handlers have received food hygiene training and can demonstrate competence
  • temperature controls for chill, cook & hot holding

Compliance with structural requirements

The FBO must demonstrate and/or provide evidence of:

  • a clean premises
  • a well maintained premises
  • that pest control procedures are in place
  • a good level of natural and/or artificial lighting
  • adequate ventilation (natural and/or mechanical)
  • effective waste disposal provision

Confidence in food safety management/control procedures

The food business operators (FBO) must demonstrate and/or provide evidence that food safety is being managed and documented in accordance with pdf icon Article 5 of Regulation (EC) 852/2004 [110kb]:

  • food safety hazards are understood, controlled, managed and reviewed
  • food safety management procedures must cover all activities ranging from the receipt to the point of sale of food
  • food handlers are adequately trained in the application of HACCP principles (see below for HACCP principles)
  • suitable supervision and food safety induction training for new staff

HACCP is defined as 'Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points' (HACCP) which is a preventative approach to food safety management. It is designed to control significant food safety hazards that are likely to cause an adverse effect on health when products are consumed. HACCP has seven principles which are:

  1. identifying physical, chemical or biological Hazards
  2. identifying Critical Control Points (CCP's)
  3. determining Critical Limits
  4. Monitoring of the critical limits
  5. decide upon Corrective Action
  6. Document your system
  7. Verify and Validate your system

The depth of your Food Safety Management System (FSMS) will depend on the size and nature of your business i.e. a manufacturer would be required to implement a more detailed documented system than a general caterer or retailer.

Safer Food Better Business (SFBB)

To assist FBO's of small to medium sized establishments in implementing a documented food safety management system, the Food Standards Agency have produced 'Safer Food Better Business' which is a pack that can be used to document your food safety management system. 

SFBB is not the only food safety management system and you may choose whatever type of system you like as long as the system is based on the seven HACCP principles.


Displaying the Hygiene Rating

All food business establishments rated will be issued with a certificate and a sticker and will be encouraged to display this in a prominent position so it is clearly visible to members of the public.

The rating awarded will also be displayed to the public via the Food Standards Agency website.

Appealing against a Hygiene Rating

When you receive a Food Hygiene Rating, there is a 21 day period within which you can appeal to the Lead Officer for Food Safety of the Authority, if you feel that the inspecting officer has awarded you a Rating which you feel is unjust, i.e. you feel that the Rating does not reflect the hygiene standards and management controls found at your establishment at the time of the inspection.

After you have made the Appeal, the Lead Officer for Food Safety, or a nominated deputy, will respond to your Appeal within 21 days.

Guidance for appealing against a food hygiene rating score is available to download from the right hand side of this page.

A food hygiene rating appeal form is also available to download from the right hand side of this page.


Requesting a Food Hygiene Rating revisit

A request may be made for a further visit to re-score the premise, the charge for a re-visit is £150. This request can be made at any time using a 'Request for a revisit'  form. The re-visit will be carried out within 3 months on receipt of the request. 

A 'Self Assessment Checklist for Businesses' has been produced to assist food business operators in preparation for a revisit. The form is available to download from the right hand side of this page.

There are no limits to the number of requests you can make. If the case made by the food business operator is not substantiated, the council can refuse to undertake the revisit. Any visit that is undertaken will be unannounced and the inspecting officer will not only check that the required improvements have been made, but will also assess the level of compliance that is found overall. This means that the score could go up, down or remain the same if deemed appropriate.

Guidance on requesting a food hygiene rating score revisit is available to download from the right hand side of this page.


Right to reply

Food business operators will have a 'right to reply' which will be published on the website with the score. The purpose is to enable the food business operator to give an explanation of subsequent actions that have been taken to rectify non-compliance or mitigation for the circumstances at the time of the inspection, rather than to complain or criticise the scheme or 'inspecting officer'.

Food business operators will be able to send comments electronically or in writing to Torridge District Council Environmental Health. The text may be edited by the local authority before being published on the website in order to remove any offensive, defamatory, clearly inaccurate or irrelevant remarks.

Further guidance for the 'right to reply' is available to download from the right hand side of this page.

A form for submitting a 'right to reply' is also available to download from the right hand side of this page.


Benefits for Businesses

The scheme serves as a good advertisement to those businesses that practice high standards of hygiene and which will hopefully lead to an increase in business as a reward for their efforts.

Businesses can advertise their hygiene rating

Rating sticker

Ratings awarded can be used in advertising or promotional activities.

A Food Standards Agency guidance leaflet for businesses is available to download from the right hand side of this page.


Benefits for Consumers

The scheme will give the consumers the opportunity to make informed choices about where they choose to eat or buy food, based of the standard of food hygiene within food premises.

Consumers will be able to compare one business with another within their area and more widely using the Food Standards Agency 'check the ratings' online at Food Hygiene Ratings.

A Food Standards Agency guidance leaflet for consumers is available to download from the right hand side of this page.


Further information relating to the scheme is available from the Food Standards Agency and can be viewed online at the FSA Website