Sometimes it’s great to let someone else do the cooking. But whether you’re picking up a sandwich for lunch or sitting down to a slap-up meal, it’s important to know the food you’re eating has been prepared to the standard required by law.
In Scotland, all food outlets have to have a food hygiene inspection, which is undertaken by the Local Authority. Following this inspection the food outlet will be given a Food Hygiene Information Scheme (FHIS) rating based on their inspection results.
What do the FHIS ratings mean?
There are three different ratings:
- Pass means they meet the legal requirements for food hygiene.
- Improvement Required means the business didn’t meet the legal requirements and needs to make improvements.
- Exempt Premises means the business has been inspected by a local authority food safety officer, met the pass criteria, but don’t meet the criteria to be part of the scheme. These businesses are low-risk to people’s health in terms of food safety and you perhaps wouldn’t normally think of them as a food business – for example, newsagents, chemist shops or visitor centres selling tins of biscuits.
If a new business has been set up, or there is a new owner, it will not have a food hygiene rating. These businesses will be identifiable by their ‘Awaiting Inspection’ certificate or rating on our website.
Following the inspection by the Local Authority, businesses are provided with a certificate and/or sticker to display on their door or window to help consumers make informed choices about where they eat. Therefore whether a business passed the inspection or needs to take steps to improve, it’s easy for you to see how they did in their most recent food hygiene inspection.
Some businesses may choose not to display their rating on their website or premises, but all ratings are displayed on our website.
How you can help
If you know of a business that has stopped trading or started trading without a rating, contact your local authority.
Who takes part?
The scheme covers more than 48,000 food outlets across all 32 Local Authorities in Scotland. Here, you can search for specific businesses and see their results.
The Eat Safe Award
The Food Hygiene Information Scheme and the Eat Safe Award run side by side. The Food Hygiene Information Scheme rates food outlets against the legal food hygiene requirements, while the Eat Safe Award recognises food businesses that strive for excellence in delivering Food Hygiene standards. Eat Safe Award winning premises are those that go above and beyond the legal minimum standard that is required for an FHIS pass.