An Indian restaurant in Lancashire is fighting back after a claim that a mouse was found in a vegetable curry. The BBC reports that a diner claimed to have found a rodent in their meal, but investigations show it was unlikely to have been in the dish during preparation, cooking or service. Now the owner of the restaurant is taking legal action against the diners.
The restaurant has held the maximum 5* hygiene rating since national ratings were introduced in 2012. Mike Williams, Director of STS, says that this case highlights the importance of food hygiene ratings when it comes to protecting your reputation.
“No restaurant wants to be on the end of a claim like this, whether it turns out to be legitimate or not. We know the damage that such a report can do to the reputation of a business but, in this case, the owner is able to refute the claim and back it up with a strong history of excellence in food hygiene. By showing evidence of their commitment to food safety and compliance with all legislation and best practice that comes with a 5* rating, they are able to limit the damage to their business and keep consumers confidence.”
Food businesses in Wales have been required to display their food hygiene ratings since 2013 and will be required to include them on promotional literature from November 2016. Those in Northern Ireland will also be required to display their ratings from 1st October 2016. Currently businesses in England are not required to display their scores, although they often do so voluntarily – especially those which achieve the 5* rating. Calls for mandatory display are growing in England as food hygiene and safety come more to the forefront of consumers’ minds.
Mike Williams says: “The food hygiene rating system allows customers to make an informed choice on where they eat, based on the ratings. As long as a business complies with all existing food hygiene legislation and follows good practice, it should be easy for them to reach a 5* rating.”
Need help achieving the coveted 5*? Contact STS on 01252 728 300