A Cross-sectional study of the Mandatory Display of Food Hygiene Ratings among Food Businesses in Blaenau Gwent
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The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS) is a national scheme operating in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The scheme provides consumers with information on the hygiene standards in a food business following a food hygiene inspection. In Wales, it is a mandatory requirement for food business’ to display their food hygiene rating score in their premises where it can be easily seen by customers. Objective: This study aims to determine whether there is an association between the score awarded to a food premises in Blaenau Gwent, and its compliance with the mandatory display of the FHRS. It was predicted that food businesses that had been awarded a low food hygiene rating score, were less likely to display their score under the mandatory FHRS. Method: This study looked at 69 food businesses within Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council that are covered by the mandatory FHRS. Food businesses were observed and assessed against the display requirements of the Food Hygiene Ratings (Wales) Regulations 2013. Results: From the 69 premises observed, six were non-compliant with the mandatory display, equating to 8.7% of the sample. Results show an association between food businesses with a lower score and non-compliance with the mandatory FHRS, however, results from the Fisher’s Exact Test demonstrate that this was not statistically significant (p = .061, 2-sided). Further results show a positive linear trend between the score awarded to a food business and its compliance with the mandatory FHRS. Results from an Extended Mantel-Haenszel chi-square test show that this was statistically significant (p = 0.023). Conclusion: The results suggest that there is an association between the score awarded to a food business in Blaenau Gwent and its compliance with the FHRS; however, the results show no statistical significance. Therefore, this study fails to reject the null hypothesis – The food hygiene rating score awarded to a food business in Blaenau Gwent has no effect on its compliance with the mandatory display.
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