Wednesday, 21 September 2022
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Council missed 300 food hygiene inspections due to Covid

City of York Council is facing a backlog of about 300 food hygiene inspections due to the Covid pandemic.

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The authority said its public protection team had been unable to carry out about a third of planned inspections from April 2021 to March 2022 due to lockdown restrictions.

Food businesses are given a rating of zero to five.

The council said a large turnover of business ownership, due to Covid and rising costs, had increased workload.

The authority runs its food hygiene scheme in partnership with the Food Standards Agency (FSA).

During the pandemic, the FSA advised the council to prioritise higher risk food businesses.

In a report seen by the Local Democracy Reporting Service the council states: "As a result of the coronavirus pandemic and current economic situation, we have already seen an increased turnover of business ownership in the restaurant and catering food sector, and anticipate that this will continue in the year ahead.

"This 'business churn' places a strain on the team's resources due to the requirement to undertake inspections of these new premises."

York is home to about 2,000 food premises, from restaurants to catering firms.

The problem is not unique to York and the council is following a plan to address the issue and is said to be making "good progress", according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.
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