Residents to benefit from food initiative

LOCAL food businesses are set to join a scheme that encourages improvements in food safety and hygiene standards.

From April, food companies in Ryedale will become part of the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme – aimed at making it easier for consumers to choose places with good hygiene standards when they are eating out or shopping for food.

The scheme – developed by the Food Standards Agency and implemented by environmental health officers – will rate the hygiene standards of food outlets and publish them online for all residents to see.

Businesses will be given a sticker and certificate and encouraged to display these at the entrance to their premises.

Cllr Linda Cowling, chairman of the council’s commissioning board, said: “ For consumers the scheme will help them make informed choices about where to eat or shop for food and they will be able to easily compare one business with another within their own area and throughout the country.

“For businesses the scheme will provide an incentive to improve standards and do better than their competitors with any improvements they need to make to get a higher rating no more than is already required of them by law.”