Takeaway Dilemma – Food Hygiene

Most Fridays, after a busy and tiring week at work and school we can’t be bothered to cook. This has led us to head down the murky road into takeaways…

One week we had decided we wanted a chinese meal, so I started to research my local options. There’s plenty of choice, and going on the reviews at Just Eat and Hungry House, everything seemed pretty good with lots of glowing reviews.

But then I decided to have a search around at other ratings – food hygiene ones. Each food establishment is marked out of five, five being a spotless clean place, whereas 1 or 2 needs a lot of work (and I’d definitely avoid anywhere rated with a 0!). Which got me thinking – it’s all well and good ordering food via the aforementioned places, but food hygiene doesn’t come into it. What exactly was I ordering? How clean are the places I’ve been ordering from? And how often does the rating change?

The results were grim. Almost every single takeaway closest to us has a food hygene rating of 1. That’s not good at all. I immediately went off the idea of ordering from them, despite the good reviews.

food hygiene rating 1

A few came in with a 3. I can live with that, after all, it is described as satisfactory, but I felt like if I was going to buy in food, I wanted the best!

food hygiene rating 3

So I decided to go for a minimum rating of  4.  But nothing existed locally – and that was quite a surprise.

I tried a bit further out, and eventually one came up in Morden – not too far up the road, but still, not that close either. Plus the food arrived late and it was cold.

But regardless of this, it has got me thinking. Websites where you can order food don’t go into hygiene. Maybe they should? Maybe people who occasionally think too much like me would appreciate this information to hand.

food hygiene rating 5

Have you ever checked the hygiene rating before ordering a takeaway? I have to say, I was surprised with the results, and it’s definitely made me think about what I’m eating. If anything, it’s made me think about buying meals from supermarkets rather than put my business their way, if we really want someone else to do the food prep for us (and thankfully we have a Cook store in Banstead which isn’t too far out of the way.

You can search here at the Food Standards Agency website. It makes interesting reading, anyway.

One Comment

  1. Great article.
    The idea of the food hygiene rating scheme was to to give the consumer an informed choice on where to eat and to show which food businesses where committed to high standards of food hygiene.
    Unfortunately in England there is no legal obligation to display their score on the front of the premises so the consumer has to rely on looking on the internet. Wales passed a law a while ago where all food businesses are required to display their score and there are signs that this has driven up standards.

    I agree that on-line food ordering services should display the food hygiene score of the business they are promoting. Perhaps then the food outlets who constantly receive low scores will realise they have no option but to improve standards.


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