Many school kitchens do not meet hygiene laws

5 Jan 2014

Thousands of children in Scotland have been served food from kitchens that failed to meet hygiene laws, it has been revealed.

Data from the Food Standards Agency (FSA), collated by the Scottish Conservatives, shows that 83 schools, nurseries and after-school clubs were found to operate sub-standard kitchens.

Facilities in Glasgow, Highlands and the Scottish Borders were among the worst offenders for cleanliness in their catering facilities.

Conducted on a rolling basis, FSA inspections judge whether a premises meets hygiene regulations.

If it fails the owners are ordered to make urgent improvements to bring the facilities up to standard.

Failings would include raw meat left next to cooked foods, dirty equipment and mould growing on kitchen walls.

Between 2009 and 2013, inspectors identified scores of kitchens in buildings attended by children that had not achieved an acceptable level of compliance with the requirements of food hygiene law.

Those that failed, were given an “improvement required” rating, with the local council expected to check the changes have been made to ensure the kitchens were brought up to a satisfactory level.

Scottish Conservative education spokeswoman Mary Scanlon MSP said:

“It is simply shocking that thousands of children across Scotland have been served food from kitchens that have failed standard hygiene laws.

“Parents will be horrified to know their child may have been served a meal from a facility that inspectors saw fit to serve with an improvement notice.

“Basic levels of cleanliness should be adhered to across the board, and any failure to meet such standards should be addressed as a matter of urgency.

“With the festive season in full swing, we are constantly being told to follow strict hygiene rules and it’s only right that schools, nurseries and after-school clubs do the same.

“One kitchen failing to make the grade is one too many and those in charge of our children should be striving to ensure that all the food given to our children is served from premises that meet the highest possible standards.”




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