Low hygiene scores reported by St Albans eateries

food hygiene awards

food hygiene awards - Credit: Archant

St Albans has a higher percentage of food businesses with a low hygiene rating than most of the county, according to a new report.

Of the 862 food businesses in St Albans and the surrounding areas, 16.82 per cent have a food hygiene rating of three or below, according to a report by the National Farmers Union (NFU) using data produced by the Food Standards Agency.

The FSA gives businesses hygiene ratings from zero to five, with zero meaning they must make urgent improvements, one meaning major improvement is necessary, two meaning improvement is needed, three being generally satisfactory and with four being good and five being very good.

The percentage of low-rated businesses in St Albans is higher than in Dacorum, Stevenage, Welwyn Hatfield and Watford. In Watford, 14.3 per cent of businesses have a low rating, compared to 12.97 per cent in Welwyn Hatfield and 13.54 per cent in Dacorum.

Stevenage had the least low-rated businesses of anywhere in Hertfordshire, with 3.85 per cent.

The only places with a higher percentage of low-rated businesses were Three Rivers with 19.01 per cent and Hertsmere with 29.33 per cent.

In January last year, safety officers from St Albans district council gave a number of local establishments a ‘zero’ rating. These included A&A Peri Peri in London Road, Murgano’s in Victoria Street, Sea Salt in Redbourn and Harpenden Coffee Shop.

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The manager of Murgano’s chicken takeaway was convicted of food hygiene offences in April, and was given a lifelong ban from managing a food business and ordered to pay £5,000 costs. The eatery is now under new management.

Thompson St Albans in Hatfield Road, formerly Thompson at Darcy’s. was given a one star food rating in June last year but managed to bump it back up to a five by October.