Waltham Forest is the most unhygienic London borough in which to eat, according to new research shared with City A.M. this afternoon.
The area tops the list as London’s least hygienic borough for food as 13.2 per cent of its businesses received a rating of 2, meaning improvements are necessary, while 1 which means major improvement is necessary, or 0 which indicates urgent improvement is required.
The borough had the highest number of businesses which received the lowest rating possible, with 69 scoring 0.
Newham and Ealing
Newham is London’s second least hygienic borough when it comes to food, with 11.8 per cent of businesses requiring at least some improvement in their handling and preparation of food.
The third least hygienic London borough is Ealing, where 10.8 per cent of businesses received a rating of 2 or below from the Food Standards Agency.
The boroughs topped the list after professional kitchen supplier Maxima Kitchen Equipment analysed thousands of food hygiene ratings from the Food Standards Agency.
The study included more than 62,000 businesses across 32 London boroughs where people can eat out or shop for food, including restaurants, pubs, cafes, takeaways, food vans, canteens and supermarkets.
Kensington & Chelsea and the City the cleanest
Kensington and Chelsea ranked as the cleanest borough for food, with 82.2 per cent of its businesses receiving the highest possible rating of 5, which means hygiene standards are very good.
Just 15 businesses in the borough had a rating of 2 or lower, meaning only 0.93% of them needed improvement.
The City of London was behind Kensington and Chelsea with the second highest percentage of 5 ratings, with 81.5 per cent of food businesses in the City receiving the highest score.
The third cleanest borough is Greenwich, where just over three quarters of businesses (76 per cent) have a 5 rating.
Overall, more than six in ten of the London food businesses included in the study – 38,517 out of 62,079 – received the top Food Hygiene Rating rating of 5.
Islington is the only borough in the study where fewer than half of the food businesses have the highest rating, with 46.8 per cent scoring 5.
London’s top ten least hygienic food boroughs
|Hygiene rank||London Borough||Total number of food business with a rating||Percentage of food businesses with a Food Hygiene Rating of 2 or lower|
London’s top ten most hygienic food boroughs
|Hygiene rank||London Borough||Total number of food businesses with a rating||Percentage of food businesses with a Food Hygiene Rating of 5|
|1||Kensington and Chelsea||1,610||82.29|
|2||City of London Corporation||1,646||81.53|
|4||Hammersmith and Fulham||1,751||70.87|
In response to the findings, Cllr Clyde Loakes, Waltham Forest’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for the Environment, told City A.M.: “Waltham Forest takes food hygiene and the safety of consumers very seriously. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) released guidance that it would allow virtual inspections, which many local authorities have used.”
“However, in Waltham Forest we have maintained face-to-face inspections throughout the last year that allow for a more in-depth look at how a business is being run, especially looking at takeaways that many people used while working at home or isolating,” Loakes added.
He pointed out that the vast majority of food businesses in Waltham Forest are maintained to a high standard and take their responsibilities seriously.
“We will not hesitate to take action against the minority who do not. I would also encourage everyone to check the Food Standards Agency’s online tool to see a food businesses’ hygiene rating before choosing to dine,” Loakes concluded.