Food hygiene ratings

You'll receive a food hygiene score if you operate a business that makes, sells, or supplies food, either to the public or to other businesses. 

Some food businesses will also be given a food hygiene rating, as part of the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme coordinated by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and supported by local authorities. Not every food business is eligible for a rating. 

The food hygiene rating you receive will be between 0 and 5. It's an overall score for your premises which takes in account things like: 

  • food hygiene issues: safe food preparation, cooking, re-heating, cooling and storage
  • structural issues: cleanliness, repair, layout, lighting, ventilation, and other facilities
  • management: how food safety is managed and documented – using a system such as Safer food, better business.

The rating reflects the conditions found at the time of the last inspection and does not reflect the quality of food or the standards of service the business provides. 

Find out more at food.gov.uk

When we will rate your premises 

We’ll rate your premises: 

  • as part of a routine food hygiene or standards inspection
  • during a visit to investigate a complaint. 

Our officers can visit your premises at any reasonable time. They will not make an appointment unless you are a home caterer or there are security reasons, for example, a prison.

Food rating inspection 

Our officers will ask to see your food safety management system.

At the end of the inspection you will receive a report and in most cases the score for your premises. You'll also have an opportunity to discuss any problems with the visiting officer.

There are occasions when the officer will not score at the time of the inspection but they will let you know within 10 days of their inspection.

The officer can take action if the standards found are not acceptable, including things like: 

  • writing to you in more detail regarding the issues they’ve found 
  • serving enforcement notices 
  • seizing or detaining food that's suspected to be unsuitable for humans to eat.

Occasionally if very poor standards are found they may close the premises immediately or recommend prosecution.

Find a rating

You can find food hygiene ratings for Medway's food premises on the Food Standards Agency website.