The Food Hygiene Information Scheme (FHIS) effectively 'opens the door' to the kitchen or food areas.
The scheme applies to all food outlets that supply food to consumers. Each food outlet is asked to display a certificate (and/or sticker) on the door or window of their premises, saying whether they have passed their hygiene inspection, or whether improvement is required.
What information will I see?
The scheme is designed to give straightforward information about how each food outlet fared at its last food hygiene inspection carried out by its local authority. The inspection outcome applies to a business trading at a particular address, so that a change of business operator at a given address will require a fresh assessment.
Pass: A 'Pass' indicates that the business broadly met the legal requirements. These requirements include the conditions found and the management procedures in place for providing safe food.
Improvement Required: Where a business has failed to meet these requirements it will be issued with an 'Improvement Required' certificate.
Exempt Premises: A very small number of premises may be registered as food businesses in circumstances where it is unlikely that customers will view them as food premises. The assessment for such premises will have concluded that the food safety risk is negligible.
In such cases (and only with the agreement of the business), a certificate will not be issued and the information on the local authority website indicates that the business is currently exempt from the food hygiene information scheme.
Awaiting inspection: Where a business has not yet been inspected, it will be issued with a temporary certificate advising consumers of that fact. This will appear as 'Awaiting Inspection' on the website. Premises will also require to be re-inspected where they have changed ownership.
If you come across any information that does not appear to be correct (eg, a business that has ceased or started trading) contact your local authority.
Who is taking part?
FHIS covers more than 45,000 food businesses in Scotland.
How do FHIS and the Eat Safe Award Scheme operate together?
The Food Hygiene Information Scheme is compatible with the Eat Safe Award scheme. The two schemes although separate, have operated side by side since the two-year Food Hygiene Information Scheme pilot.
The Food Hygiene Information Scheme is designed to rate hygiene standards against legal requirements and is distinct from the Eat Safe Award scheme, which is designed to recognise businesses that have achieved standards over and above the legal requirements.