Environmental health officers from North Lincolnshire Council visited the Cocked Hat Hotel on 22 May this year and they found there was major improvement necessary in the pub’s hygienic handling of food including preparation, cooking, re-heating, cooling and storage.
The cleanliness and condition of the building and facilities, including having an “appropriate layout”, ventilation, hand-washing facilities and pest control was found to need urgent improvement.
The Lincolnshire-based pub’s management of food safety - including system or checks in place to ensure food sold or served is safe to eat and evidence that staff know about food safety - was also found to require urgent improvement.
Pub licensee Paul Stocks said: “The issues raised by the environmental health officer have been addressed and we have been allowed to remain open as a result.
“We have also requested a re-scoring, but regrettably this cannot be done for another five months. In the meantime, we are reviewing all procedures and training to ensure standards are improved and maintained.”
Food safety issues can seriously damage a pub's reputation, but a five star food hygiene rating can improve it and The Morning Advertiser looked at how this can be achieved.
Hygiene website Food Safety Guru issued five top tips on how to 'guarantee' a five-star rating.
A storage system in the kitchen can eliminate any potential cross contamination of raw with ready-to-eat.
Keeping food items on racks instead of the floor and ensuring they have a date label can also help achieve that five-star rating.
When it comes to preparation, washing raw and ready-to-eat foods and dishes in the same sink can cause problems in the pub kitchen.
Having separate sinks is one option but, if this isn’t feasible, plan the day so ready-to-eat foods are washed first, then raw vegetables next.
Have separate time slots for dishwashing and food prep and stick to them. Use a colander to drain cooked veg so the finished item does not come into contact with the sink.
Sanitise the sink after washing raw fruit and veg and after dish washing and ensure procedures are documented.
Using the same preparation space for raw and ready-to-eat foods can also cause cross-contamination.
Keeping a clean handwash basin with antibacterial soap and blue roll for drying hands is vital in keeping the kitchen clean.
Use blue roll and sanitiser to clean work surfaces as cloths that are used more than once can spread bacteria causing cross-contamination.
Training staff, particularly around food poisoning and safe preparation of food, through online courses and information sheets can help avoid the risk of contamination.
5. Record keeping
Food Safety Guru says operators will not get a Level 5 Food Hygiene Rating unless they adhere to the above points.