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Evaluation of the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme and Food Hygiene Information Scheme: Process Evaluation Stage 2


<p>The main aims of stage 2 of the process evaluation are as follows:</p>
<p><ol><li>to assess how the schemes are operating now that they have had time to ‘bed in’ throughout the UK</li>
<li>to identify what perceived impacts the schemes are having amongst local authorities, food businesses and consumers</li>
<li>to gain particular understanding of the attitudes and experiences of food businesses with relatively poor standards of hygiene</li></ol></p>

<p>The process evaluation took a systematic approach to data collection, consisting of both quantitative and qualitative social science techniques. Feedback was collected from across the key stakeholder groups in the following forms:</p>
<p><ol><li>30 in-depth telephone interviews with local authority food safety officers</li>
<li>in-depth interviews with food business operators</li>
<li>12 focus groups with consumers (seven or eight per group and selected to ensure scheme awareness)</li>
<li>quantitative telephone survey of about 800 food businesses</li></ol></p>

<p>The sample was taken from 30 local authorities, drawn from across the UK, fifteen in England, five in Wales, five in Scotland and five in Northern Ireland. The local authorities were selected in such a way to ensure a range of areas and demographic characteristics were represented in order to capture variation amongst stakeholder groups. </p>

More information

<p>The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS) was launched formally in November 2010 and the Food Hygiene Information Scheme (FHIS) was piloted from November 2006 with full roll out beginning January 2009.
The schemes are local authority/FSA partnership initiatives which provide consumers with information about hygiene standards in food premises at the time they are inspected to check compliance with legal requirements – the rating or result given reflects the inspection findings. The schemes enable consumers to make informed choices about where to eat out or shop for food and, through the power of these choices, encourage businesses to improve hygiene standards.</p>

<p>The process evaluation was carried out in two stages:</p>
<p><ol><li>Stage 1 focused on early implementation and delivery of the schemes</li>
<li>Stage 2 focused on what the perceived impacts of the scheme are amongst the three key stakeholder groups – local authorities, food businesses and consumers</li></ol></p>

Policy Studies Institute
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