Appeal a rating score

If you operate a food premises business, you may be able to appeal a food rating score, request a revisit or request to post a 'right to reply'

Appeal a food rating score

As a food business operator of the establishment, you have a right to appeal the food hygiene rating given following your inspection, if you do not agree that the rating reflects the hygiene standards and management controls at the establishment.

Please note that you have up to 21 days (including weekends and bank holidays) from the date you have received your written notification to lodge an appeal.

Appeal a food rating score

Request a revisit of a food premises

As a food business operator of the establishment, you have a right to request a revisit for the purposes of a re-rating if you have taken action to rectify the non-compliances identified at the time of inspection.

Any requests for a revisit made will incur the standard charge of £177.50 payable prior to the revisit taking place.

Request to post a 'right to reply'

As a food business operator of the establishment, you have a right to request a 'right to reply' in respect of the food hygiene rating given following your inspection.

The purpose is to enable you to give an explanation of subsequent actions that have been taken to make the required improvements as detailed in the inspection report/letter, or to explain mitigation for the circumstances at the time of the inspection.

Please note it is not for making complaints or for criticising the scheme or food safety officer.

Consent for early publication of rating

As the food business operator of the establishment, you may request that your new rating is published before the period in which you can appeal against the rating has elapsed.

How ratings are calculated

Inspection criteria

During your inspection, the food safety officer will check how well you are meeting the law on food hygiene. Three areas will be assessed:

  • how hygienically the food is handled – how it is prepared, cooked, cooled, stored, and what measures are taken to prevent food being contaminated with bacteria
  • the condition of the structure of the premises including cleanliness, layout, lighting, ventilation, equipment and other facilities
  • how you manage and record what you do to make sure food is safe using a system like safer food, better business

You will be given a score for each area – see below. Food safety officers use guidance to determine how to score each of these areas.

Food hygiene scoring criteria
Criteria Score
How hygienically the food is handled 0 5 10 15 20 25
Condition of structure 0 5 10 15 20 25
How you manage and document food safety 0 5 10 20 30
Total score 0   80
Level of compliance High   Low

Your food hygiene rating

The rating given depends on how well the business does overall – the total score. It also depends on the area(s) that need improving the most - the business may do better in some areas and less well in others.

To get the top rating, you must score no more than 5 in each of the three areas. All businesses should be able to get the top rating. You will automatically get a new rating at each planned inspection.

Food hygiene rating
Total score 0 - 15 20 25 - 30 35 - 40 45 - 50 > 50
Highest permitted individual score 5 10 10 15 20 -
Rating 5 - Very good 4 - Good 3 - Generally satisfactory 2 - Improvement necessary 1 - Major improvement necessary 0 - Urgent improvement necessary