Eat safely this Valentine’s Day

Date: 02/02/2015
PR4859

We are reminding residents of the importance of food safety this Valentine's Day.

As part of a national campaign by the Food Standards Agency, the Council is encouraging residents who are eating out over the Valentine's period to look before they book.

The message is to check a restaurant's food hygiene rating online or by looking out for the hygiene sticker in the restaurant, to avoid the risk of getting food poisoning and other serious illnesses.

Cllr Maureen Cummings, Cabinet Member for Environment and Communities said: "With Valentine's Day coming closer we want to make sure people can enjoy good company and food– rather than worrying about a serious bout of food poisoning.

"Often, it can be difficult to recognise how clean a restaurant is even though it may look good – so it is extremely important to keep an eye for the food standards rating sticker in the front window or to have a quick check online."

Catriona Stewart, head of the Food Hygiene Ratings Team at the Foods Standard Agency said: "On Valentine's Day people are focused on making sure that special lunch or dinner goes well and that they make a good impression with their date. We want them to factor in the food hygiene rating when deciding where to go and then enjoy their romantic meal out."

The food hygiene rating looks at hygiene standards in restaurants and other food businesses and can be checked online on www.food.gov.uk/ratings Alternatively, restaurants must display a green and black sticker in their premises, or if you can't see one, just ask.

The ratings are determined by local authority food safety officers and run from 0-5, with a 5 rating meaning a very good level of food hygiene. If a green and black sticker isn't visible in the window people are urged to check the rating on the website to can make a better informed choice of where to eat.

For more information please visit www.food.gov.uk