Don’t let a bad meal spoil your Valentine’s day

Published February 11, 2015 at 14:24

Make sure the most romantic day of the year isn’t spoilt by a food disaster.

A new Food Standards Agency (FSA) poll shows that one in five people have had a food-related dating disaster on valentine’s Day – so make sure you check the restaurant’s food hygiene rating.

The poll by the FSA shows that bad restaurant experiences are responsible for a third (34%) of those Valentine’s day fiascos. However, less than half of those asked check the food hygiene rating of a restaurant before booking their Valentine’s meal.

It is hard to tell a restaurant’s hygiene standards by how clean and tidy their staff look or by the romantic ambience. The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme can take one load off your mind and gives you the reassurance that all areas of hygiene that you can’t see have been checked.

The rating is determined by local authority food safety officers and range from 0-5, with a 5 rating meaning very good food hygiene standards. Over 90% of food businesses are rated a 3 or higher, which means there are plenty of places with good standards to choose from.

Councillor Jim Smith, Blackburn with Darwen’s Executive Member for Environment, said:

We want people to enjoy their romantic dates on Valentine’s Day, and it will put a real dampener on the night if the hygiene isn’t up to standard. I will be taking my wife out for a meal and will be checking the food hygiene ratings myself to make sure we have a good night!

The Food Standards Agency and Blackburn with Darwen Council are encouraging couples to go online to check the hygiene ratings of their chosen restaurant this Valentine’s to make sure their meal goes well.

If you don’t see a green and black sticker in the window or you spot a low rating online, check out somewhere else with a higher rating. You can even check the ratings on your mobile or tablet www.food.gov.uk/ratings

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