Village pub slapped with zero food-hygiene rating

By Emily Hawkins

- Last updated on GMT

Improvement needed: a pub was awarded the lowest food hygiene ranking in an inspection this summer
Improvement needed: a pub was awarded the lowest food hygiene ranking in an inspection this summer

Related tags Lincolnshire Food safety

A village pub has been awarded the lowest food-hygiene rating of zero and its food safety management deemed to need urgent improvement.

The White Hart, in Nettleham, Lincolnshire, was awarded the lowly rating after an inspection by a food safety officer this summer.

The standard of hygienic food handling at the site was categorised as needing major improvement, while its food safety management was dubbed as requiring urgent attention.

It was also told there was improvement necessary when it came to the cleanliness and condition of the facilities and building.

The pub received a total score of 65 in its inspection from West Lindsey District Council on 30 August 2019. If a site is scored more than 50, it qualifies for a zero star rating.

Hygiene failings at the pub included an absence of a food labelling system and an unsafe fridge temperature.

Contamination risks

There was a “complete absence” of opened foods being date coded.

Food was found on the premises that was past its use-by date, which was deemed to be a contamination risk.

The officer found a pack of Tesco mince with a use-by date of 27 August in the fridge in addition to an opened tin of peaches that was not decanted into a container.

In a summary of their findings, the officer told the pub: “Several foods were found in the fridge, whereby the manufacturer clearly states instructions, and shelf life, for the food once opened. 

“With no effective date coding and stock control system, you are unable to demonstrate effective implementation of food safety instructions provided by the manufacturer.”

Dirty floors

Sauces and dressings were discovered, which stated “once opened, keep refrigerated” and did not specify when they had been opened, such as salad cream and blue cheese dressing.

Aspects of the kitchen were described as dirty, particularly the junctions of floors and walls and behind equipment. 

Split and cracked wooden servery boards were found in the kitchen that the inspector said posed a contamination risk. 

The air temperature of the refrigerator was above the legal limit and deemed to support the growth of food-poisoning bacteria. 

The inspector recommended clutter be removed from an outhouse to minimise the potential of pest harbourage and that fixtures and fittings were cleaned to minimise any risk of contamination. 

The Morning Advertiser​ contacted the White Hart for comment but it had not responded by the time of publication.

However, head chef Mark Allibone told local newspaper LincolnshireLive​ the rating was down to “a few housekeeping and paperwork issues”​ that had been corrected. 

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