Claims Direct gathered data on over 450,000 food businesses from across the UK and created the above map highlighting the average hygiene rating in each postcode area. We then broke it down by business type, so you can definitively know what part of the UK has the best hotels, restaurants, pubs/bars and takeaways when it comes to food hygiene; and of course which area has the worst.
On average food outlets in the UK (excluding Scotland) have a rating of 4.52 out of 5, this is based on over 400,000 businesses.
When examining the hygiene rating data for England we looked at a total of 106 postcode areas. The top three overall where:
- DT (Dorchester) with an average score of 4.85 based on 1,890 locations
- HG (Harrogate) with an average score of 4.83 based on 1,091 locations
- TD (Galashiels) with an average score of 4.832 based on 272 locations>*
With an honourable mention going to the IP (Ipswich) postcode which came in fourth position with an average rating of 4.78 based on a whopping 4,561 locations, making it one of the most hygienic cities in the UK to eat in!
Greater London has the only postcode area with less than a 4 star rating on average (UB), the eight least hygienic postcodes to eat in and its average score as a whole is only 4.24 based on 67,458 locations; but below are the three most hygienic areas to eat in London based on this data:
- KT (Kingston upon Thames – Greater London) with an average score of 4.56 based on 3,406 locations
- DA (Dartford – Greater London) with an average score of 4.46 based on 2,821 locations
- EC (Eastern Central – Greater London) with an average score of 4.44 based on 2,193 locations
Battle of the roses (YO vs LA)
LA (Lancaster) postcode food outlets have a better food hygiene rating than YO (York) postcode food outlets.
- The average food hygiene rating of food outlets with a YO postcode is 4.63 based on 5,624 locations.
- The average food hygiene rating of food outlets with an LA postcode is 4.7 based on 3,214 locations.
Scotland has different system than the rest of the UK when it comes to food hygiene rating. Instead of getting a rating from 0-5 like in the rest of the UK the rating system in Scotland gives food outlets a either “Pass” or “Improvement required”. Some outlets are also rated as “Pass plus ‘Eat Safe’ award”. In order to rate each individual postcode area for Scotland we simply calculated the percentage of outlets that had a pass or above in that postcode area.
We had data for over 45,000 food outlets in Scotland. On average 81.2% had a “Pass” inspection result.
The top three postcode areas for Scotland are:
- DG (Dumfries) had a pass inspection rate of 95% based on 1,537 locations
- HS (Outer Hebrides) had a pass inspection rate of 90.8% based on 435 locations
- TD (Galashiels) had a pass inspection rate of 88.4% based on 1,245 locations>**
The three areas with the lowest pass inspection rate in Scotland are:
- ZE (Shetland Islands) had a pass inspection rate of 40.1% based on 334 locations***
- IV (Inverness) had a pass inspection rate of 61.8% based on 3,150 locations
- KW (Kirkwall) had a pass inspection rate of 73.7% based on 811 locations
Glasgow vs Edinburgh (G vs EH)
EH (Edinburgh) postcode food outlets have a better food hygiene rating than G (Glasgow) postcode food outlets.
- Food outlets in the EH postcode area had a pass inspection rate of 85.1% based on 7,050 venues
- Food outlets in the G postcode area had a pass inspection rate of 78.4% based on 8,654 venues
How the rating system works
There are two rating systems, one that is used in Scotland and one that is used in the rest of the UK.
England, Wales and Northern Ireland
In England, Wales and Northern Ireland the scheme gives businesses a rating from 0 to 5. Each score comes with an attached meaning:
- 5 – hygiene standards are very good
- 4 – hygiene standards are good
- 3 – hygiene standards are generally satisfactory
- 2 – some improvement is necessary
- 1 – major improvement is necessary
- 0 – urgent improvement is required
The rating is not there to score factors such as taste or quality of food, instead it is there to ensure businesses are complying with health and safety regulations and ensure that the following is done safely:
- handling of food
- how food is stored
- how food is prepared
- cleanliness of facilities
- how food safety is managed
In Scotland the Food Hygiene Information Scheme is used, the ratings are as follows:
- Pass plus ‘Eat Safe’ award (The Eat Safe Award provides an incentive to food businesses to strive for food hygiene and food safety management standards beyond those required by law).
- Pass (the legal requirement for food hygiene has been met).
- Improvement required (the legal requirement for food hygiene was not met and the business in question needs to make improvements).
- Exempt premises (usually used for low risk premises).
- Awaiting inspection (a new business that has not yet been inspected).
How this data was gathered
This data was gathered in June/August 2019 from the https://ratings.food.gov.uk/ website. A small percentage of results has been omitted for one of the two following reasons:
- At the time of our visit the webpage did not work returning a non 200 HTTP header response code.
- The address did not contain an easy to extract postcode, making it hard to use when creating the map data.
As few as possible locations where omitted and the data was created by using over 450,000 rows of data. For a raw export of the data used please click here.
Food poisoning and Claims Direct
Claims direct are No Win No Fee personal injury lawyers with experience in all areas of public accident claims. If you have suffered food poisoning that has made you ill for more than two weeks in the UK contact one of our friendly personal injury lawyers to see how they can help.
*Only based on locations using the English, Welsh and NI system included for comparison.
**Only based on locations using the Scottish system included for comparison.
***In the ZE postcode area a larger than usual amount of food locations where exempt, bringing the pass score down significantly.