The FSA published its report to mark the fifth anniversary of its Food Hygiene Rating Scheme, highlighting levels of hygiene in pubs, restaurants, cafés and take-aways across England.
The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme scores outlets 0–5, with a 5 rating meaning very good hygiene standards.
The ratings are determined by local authority food safety officers, who visit the outlets to assess the levels of hygiene.
Wetherspoon has the highest proportion of 5s (93.1 per cent), joint top with Pret A Manger.
The company’s chief executive, John Hutson, said: “Food hygiene is of paramount importance to our customers – and rightly so.
“Our pub management and staff work hard to ensure that our pubs offer customers the highest level of food hygiene, at all times.
“We are extremely pleased that our pubs offer the best standards of food hygiene in the FSA ratings over the past five years – and we will strive to maintain and improve our ratings in the coming months and years.
“We have 950 pubs, many of them open 16 hours a day, seven days a week, so it is a great achievement by our staff to maintain such high standards.”
Catriona Stewart, who heads the FSA’s Food Hygiene Ratings Scheme, said: “Our latest data shows the importance of checking hygiene ratings before eating out.
“We want to build on the success of the scheme over its first five years and reduce consumer risk even further – encouraging people to ‘look before they book’.
“Telling people about hygiene standards in food outlets, in a way which is clear and easy to understand, has made a real difference.
“We’ve seen standards improve and more and more businesses able to show their customers that they take food hygiene seriously.
“It’s really easy to check the hygiene rating of a food business.” Go to the Food Standards Agency’s website.