Local Authority Food Hygiene Enforcement 2016/17
All food businesses should be inspected to check that they meet hygiene requirements, based on their level of risk. The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is responsible for co-ordinating enforcement of these checks delivered by Local Authorities around the country, with Food Standards Scotland (FSS) doing this in Scotland. As part of this work, the FSA collates data on enforcement activities from each Local Authority and publishes it annually (from its Local Authority Enforcement Monitoring system - LAEMS).
We used data from the 2016/17 LAEMS, collected by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) to monitor food hygiene compliance, to rate 390 UK local authorities against an overall score created from the percentages of:
- high-and medium-risk food businesses compliant with food hygiene standards;
- premises that have opened but not yet been visited and rated for risk; and
- interventions required that have been carried out.
Food establishments are split into 5 categories from A to E depending on the level of risk to the public posed by that type of establishment. A business rated as highest risk (A) should be inspected at least every six months, whereas a low risk business (E) may only be inspected every 3 years.
Our analysis of the LAEMS data is based on 3 indicators:
1. The proportion of A,B and C risk premises (medium and high risk) that are compliant with food hygiene requirements - this reflects whether or not Local Authorities are fulfilling their role of ensuring food businesses are able to comply with hygiene law.
2. The proportion of rated food premises in their area - this reflects their ability to keep on top of food businesses opening in their area, rate them and therefore determine future inspection frequency.
3 The percentage of planned interventions carried out as a proportion of rated premises - this reflects the extent to which they are pro-actively trying to ensure that businesses that are not complying with hygiene requirements, improve their standards.
Our overall score combines these three indicators into one measure, with the "% ABC broadly compliant" weighted to make up half of the share of the indicator, and a quarter each to the remaining 2 indicators.
Please note that in the 2016/2017 data several Local Authorities joined together to deliver a combined return to the FSA. In our analysis we have split those authorites out and provided duplicated data for each one. These Local Authorities were:
Adur and Worthing
Babergh and Mid Suffolk
Rother and Wealden
West Suffolk Councils (Forest Heath and St. Edmundsbury).
The return for the London Borough of Westminster was incomplete and therefore excluded from the rankings.
Ards and North Down has also been excluded from this analysis because FSA confirmed that its submitted data was incorrect.