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Cafe faces bill for nearly £2,500 after false claim about food hygiene rating

Veli's Cafe showing the '5' food hygiene rating stickers, which were up while the cafe had a '1' rating.  It now has a '3' rating

Veli's Cafe showing the '5' food hygiene rating stickers, which were up while the cafe had a '1' rating. It now has a '3' rating

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A café in Islington has been left with a bill for almost £2,500 after falsely claiming it had a top food hygiene rating of ‘5’ when its actual rating was ‘1’.

Veli’s Café, at 60 Drayton Park, London, N5 1NP, was visited by Islington Council Trading Standards in June 2016  after a report that the café had been displaying the wrong food hygiene rating since July 2015.

A Trading Standards officer found the café had two ‘5’ food hygiene rating stickers on its front door, and a ‘5’ certificate, while its actual rating was ‘1’. A ‘5’ rating means “very good”, while ‘1’ means “much improvement necessary”.

On 9 March 2017 Kinal Ltd, trading as Veli’s Café, was fined £1500 in its absence at Highbury Magistrates’ Court for two offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008. It was also ordered to pay costs of £896 and a victim surcharge of £75, a total of £2471.

The café had previously been rated ‘5’ for food hygiene, but was downgraded to ‘1’ in July 2015.  Since October 2016 it has had a rating of ‘3’.
 
Islington Council is urging other food businesses to check they are displaying the right food hygiene ratings to make sure members of the public are not misled.

Cllr Andy Hull, Islington Council’s executive member for finance, community safety and performance, said: “It’s important residents and visitors know where they can expect good food hygiene, and have confidence in the food hygiene rating system.

“We urge businesses to make sure they are displaying the correct food hygiene rating – we will take action where the rating displayed is higher than a business’s actual rating.

“If businesses are not sure how food hygiene ratings work or what they need to do, they can look at the Food Standards Agency website for help and advice, or contact our Environmental Health commercial team.”

It is not compulsory for businesses to display food hygiene ratings, although Islington Council and the Food Standards Agency encourage businesses to display them so customers are kept informed.  However, displaying a rating that is higher than a business’s actual rating is not allowed and can lead to prosecution.

For more information about the food hygiene rating scheme, please visit the Food Standards Agency website: https://www.food.gov.uk/

To find out the food hygiene rating of rating of a particular food premises, please visit: http://ratings.food.gov.uk/
 

For more information contact:

Chris Roe
Media Manager
020 7527 8751
Chris.Roe@islington.gov.uk