FOUR food outlets in Burnley were found to need “urgent” improvements under the Government’s Food Standards Agency guidelines.
Moonlight, in Croft Street, Focus Off Licence, in Briercliffe Road and Oliver’s Off Licence, in New Hall Street, all scored food hygiene ratings of zero out of five in the latest round of inspections.
Alarmingly, 24 food hygiene breaches were discovered at the Moonlight takeaway in an inspection which looked at how hygienically food is handled, the condition and cleanliness of premises and how food safety is managed.
This comes after the owners of The Stables at Towneley were brought before the courts last month for 26 hygiene breaches, including out-of-date food and kitchen surfaces covered in dirt and grease, following an inspection in May 2011.
The cafe, which also scored a zero in hygiene ratings, was fined almost £10,000 by magistrates – but the owners claim the problems have now all been rectified.
Burnley Borough Council says it has even had to close down six failing food outlets in the past five years.
A further 30 businesses in Burnley scored a food hygiene rating of just one out of five which indicates “major” improvements necessary.
However, the figures, which are publicly available on the Food Standards Agency website, show that 573 out of all 707 establishments in the borough were “satisfactory” or above. Around 35% of all food outlets in Burnley scored five out of five which is a “very good” food hygiene rating.
Coun. Peter McCann, Executive member of Burnley Council, said: “On the whole it is quite reassuring that the majority of establishments have scored over three which is the target.
“Of the ones that fall below, our officers are working hard with them to educate them. The role of the council is to bring them up to standard. If the score is one, two or three they will get regular visits and be re-inspected.”
The council confirmed it was working closely with the owners of Moonlight to achieve compliance.