How not to die of food poisoning

Now wash your hands!
Now wash your hands!

Love food but hate getting poisoned?

If that describes you, you might be excited to know that Harrogate council’s food hygiene scheme is changing home.

From April 1, you’ll be able to visit this website and type in “Harrogate”.

It’s a dramatic change from the previous system, which involved visiting this website and typing in “Harrogate”.

It’s a national database of food hygiene ratings, so you’ll also be able to find out if your dinner’s going to kill you if you’re eating out in, say, Birmingham.

The ratings run from five to zero. If it’s a five, you can be confident your meal has been prepared in an immaculate kitchen by impeccably clean staff, served on spotlessly disinfected crockery with cutlery fit for an angel.

If it’s a zero, you can be confident your meal has been prepared in the toilets by staff who haven’t washed since 2007, served in a mop bucket with cutlery found in a skip. They probably don’t even own a fridge.

Here’s a quote about the change from Harrogate Coun Nick Brown, cabinet member for public protection and rural affairs: “Although we already have a very successful local food hygiene scheme, we have opted to change to the national scheme, as we can see the benefits for local food businesses and the people that eat or shop in them.

“Having a single scheme, that is consistent nationwide, means that the rating will have the same significance wherever people are buying food.

“People will be able to use the information when deciding which food outlets to visit and we hope that food companies will recognise that displaying a good hygiene rating is good for business.”