The 20 pubs, cafes and restaurants in Sunderland and Durham rated two stars or less for food hygiene

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These are the 19 restaurants, pubs and cafes in the Sunderland, Durham City and East Durham which were rated two stars or less for food hygiene.

All businesses preparing and serving food are inspected by council officers, with each given a hygiene rating from 0-5.

A database of scores is kept by the Food Standards Agency.

A zero rating signifies “urgent improvement necessary”, a one-star rating indicates “major improvement necessary” and two stars means “improvement necessary”.

The inspection criteria includes:

•How hygienically the food is handled

•How it is prepared, cooked, re-heated, cooled and stored

•The condition of the structure of the buildings

•The cleanliness, layout, lighting, ventilation and other facilities

•How the business manages and records what it does to make sure food is safe

At the end of the inspection, the business is given one of the six ratings from 0-5.

A new rating is given each time a business is inspected by a food safety officer from the business’s local authority.

The frequency of inspections depends on the potential risk to public health as assessed at the previous inspection.

The assessment takes into account the type of food that is handled, the number and type of customers, the types of processes carried out before the food is sold or served, and the hygiene standards seen on the day of inspection.

On its website, the Food Standards Agency says: “Businesses that pose a higher risk are inspected more often than businesses that pose a lower risk.

“For example, a small retailer selling a range of pre-packed foods that only need to be refrigerated.

“The time between inspections varies from six months for the highest risk businesses to two years for lower risk businesses.

“For some very low risk businesses, the interval between inspections may be longer than two years, however there may be some exceptions to this.”

The Food Standards Agency can be contacted on 0207 2104850 or by emailing helpline@foodstandards.gsi.gov.uk