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Scores on the Doors

GH-Training Solutions

Scores on the Doors

GH Training Solutions Comments Off on Scores on the Doors

Are you aware that in 2019, it is likely that it will become mandatory to display your food hygiene rating? Given that some scores displayed on http://ratings.food.gov.uk/ are dated from 2 or 3 years ago, the score you receive at your next inspection could be the one you’re stuck with.

How does that make you feel? Are you happy and confident? Maybe you’ve chosen to display your score already, because you’re proud of that 5 that you’ve worked hard for. Or you’ve recognised the benefit displaying the score gives in the form of customer confidence.

Or does it make you feel anxious? How much of that anxiety is because you are disappointed by your score? Do you worry that displaying a low score will deter customers?

Evidence does indicate that a low score can have a negative impact on your sales; when questioned, 68% of consumers in England said they would base their decision on purchasing food on the food hygiene rating.

But what was the lowest acceptable score in the consumers eyes?

Over the past years, the lowest acceptable score in England has actually increased from a 3 to a 4, showing a trend towards consumers demanding higher quality behind-the-scenes as well as on the plate.

So if your business scores a 3 or less, you are essentially losing a large number of potential customers, who will actively choose to avoid spending money with you – can you afford to do this?

So, if you don’t want this to be you – now is the time to act. Invest your time and energy in bringing your business up to a good standard and be proud to display your score.

Need further advice? I have put together a Toolkit to help you ‘Embrace your EHO visit’. Subscribe to my newsletter and receive the free download

 For hints and tips or food safety training advice, contact me.

5 Do’s and Don’ts to prevent food allergies becoming a problem in your business

GH Training Solutions Comments Off on 5 Do’s and Don’ts to prevent food allergies becoming a problem in your business

Following on from the recent food allergy prosecution, it was reported that food safety training had been insufficient. Here are 5 simple steps you as a food business owner or manager can take to keep your customers safe:

  • DO make sure all food handlers have received the appropriate level of food safety training – know the 14 allergens and really understand how life threatening they can be. This is not the customer being difficult, but rather their life depends on what we do.
  • DON’T assume everyone knows the ingredients of a dish, what may be obvious for the chefs is not necessarily obvious for the waiter.
  • In the kitchen or food preparation area, DO ensure ingredients containing allergens are clearly labelled and separated.
  • Do make sure that your allergy information about your dishes is up-to-date, easy to understand and available for customers.
  • DO make sure your emergency procedures are clear and well known to staff so that they can help quickly should they need it.

More tips and guidelines for dealing with food allergens are covered in Level 2, Level 3 and Level 4 Food Safety courses. In house allergen specific courses can also be arranged.

 

 

Food Allergies – The price of (not) training

GH Training Solutions Comments Off on Food Allergies – The price of (not) training

In the UK, like most developed countries, the increase in people with food allergies is described as an ‘Epidemic of food allergies’ with several possible contributing factors.

Whatever the cause, this epidemic is not something the food industry can ignore and is set to increase in the future.

Since changes in food safety and hygiene regulations in 2014, there is a legal requirement for information to be provided for both packaged and unpackaged food.

As food providers, we also have a legal and moral responsibility to ensure we take reasonably practicable measures to keep our customers safe from allergies.

This together with changes in sentencing legislation has meant in the last 2 years we have seen an increase in prosecutions relating to food allergies as well as an increase in fines and prison sentences handed out. The most recent being a nursery who was fined £10 000 following a child in their care being rushed to hospital after being fed pesto containing cashew nuts. Staff had been told that the child was allergic to nuts, but failed to read the ingredient list. Findings showed there was a failure in food safety training.

Although finding the time and money to pay for food safety and hygiene training courses seems onerous, it would have cost a lot less than the £10 000 fine, let alone the cost of a damaged reputation. More importantly, what is the cost of a life?

Read the article here:

https://www.daynurseries.co.uk/news/article.cfm/id/1584986/Nursery-fined-10000-after-child-suffered-allergic-reaction-to-meal-containing-nuts

GH Training Solutions are an established provider of in house and public training courses for food safety Levels 1-4. Click here for more details.