Are you planning the perfect Valentine’s date?

Planning the perfect date can be stressful as there’s a lot to worry about, including of course – whether you will get on and if you will make a good impression.

So the last thing you want to think about before an important dinner is whether or not the place you choose takes food hygiene seriously. The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme means you don’t have to.

The Food Standards Agency is urging you look before you book and check the food hygiene rating before deciding where to go on your special date.  Most restaurants and cafes in the Selby district do display their rating on their doors or windows.

The truth is, you can’t tell a restaurant’s hygiene standards by how clean and tidy the staff look or by how romantic the décor and ambience is.

It’s the things you can’t see – like germs spread by bad hygiene practices – that you need to consider. There’s one easy way to set your mind at rest – check the food hygiene rating. This tells you about hygiene standards in restaurants and other food businesses.

It’s really simple to check. Just go online to the Food Standard Agency’s website: www.food.gov.uk/ratings or if you’re out and about look for the green and black sticker; if you can’t see one just ask the staff.

The ratings are determined by Selby District Council’s food safety officers and range from 0 to 5, with a 5 rating meaning very good food hygiene standards.

Nationally 92% of food businesses are rated a 3 or higher so there are plenty of places with good food hygiene standards, you can choose from. This means you can easily avoid taking your special date to those places not meeting the grade.

It’s good for business too

Valentine’s is a busy time for food businesses and a good food hygiene rating is something to be proud of. So make sure you reassure your customers by putting your sticker up in the window. Businesses with higher food hygiene ratings agree that can helps bring hungry customers through the door.

Thousands of food businesses displaying a 3 to 5 rating say it made a positive difference to their business.

You can find out more at www.food.gov.uk/business-industry/caterers/hygieneratings

For more information, visit www.food.gov.uk/business-industry/caterers/hygieneratings