FSA looks to make display of food hygiene ratings mandatory

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) plans to expand the mandatory display of food hygiene ratings at food outlets in England, as highlighted in the FSA’s strategy for 2015-2020.

The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS) aims to support consumers by providing information about public health protection regarding food.

To support its case, the FSA is currently gathering evidence to be presented to the government, as well as developing an impact assessment (IA) that will outline the costs and possible benefits of introducing a statutory income.

“We are seeking views on the initial draft of an IA exploring the costs and benefits of introducing the legislation that would be necessary to make the display of ratings at food outlets in England mandatory,” said the FSA.

“The background sections of the IA outline the rationale for putting the FHRS on a statutory footing in England and summarise the evidence that we have collected so far to inform the case for the government’s consideration.”

The IA includes the FSA’s initial assessment of the costs and benefits for consumers, food businesses, local authorities and the FSA itself.

If the government agrees that there is a case, the FSA will undertake a complete public consultation on the proposed regulation and on a formal draft of the IA, which is anticipated to take place in late 2016. As a result, there will be a further opportunity to provide comments and views.

Responses are requested by Friday, 5 February, 2016.

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