FOOD hygiene ratings are a good indicator of how safe it is to eat from your favourite restaurant, pub, takeaway or cafe. 

Council officers inspect these eateries regularly before giving establishments ratings from zero to five based on how good their cooking, cleaning and safety practices are. 

READ MORE: Food hygiene ratings for every restaurant in The Lexicon

But since the end of April, only two of the borough’s food places have been given new hygiene ratings by the Public Protection Partnership, a shared service which oversees environmental health issues in parts of Berkshire. 

Those eateries were Kaspas dessert parlour on Bond Way, which scored five out of five (very good) in October, and Kings Kebabs on Bagshot Road, which was given a four out of five (good) in September. 

But new ratings are still flooding in for restaurants, pubs, takeaways and cafes in other parts of the county, such as Reading and Slough.

READ MORE: Kaspas desserts gets new food hygiene rating

In light of this, the News asked the PPP, which covers Bracknell Forest, West Berkshire and Wokingham borough, why new ratings were not being published for these areas. 

A spokesperson for the PPP said: “The PPP stopped routine inspection work on the 12th March for three months in line with national advice from the Food Standards Agency. 

“We have resumed some inspection work based on risk categorisation. 

“The service is balancing the work on food inspections, other business as usual work and the demands relating to Covid which include Covid compliance checks, following up complaints and concerns, responding to requests for advice and monitoring and investigation of local outbreaks. 

READ MORE: Top five Indian restaurants in Bracknell (and their food hygiene ratings)

“We have brought in some additional resource but Covid related demand continues to grow.  In the next two months our priorities for food safety will be high-risk businesses:

  • Establishments where we have  identified potential public health/consumer protection concerns
  • Establishments subject to ongoing formal enforcement action
  • Establishments overdue/due an enforcement revisit - unless we are content from prior remote interaction with the business that non-compliances have been rectified

“This is in line with Food Standards Agency guidance at this time. 

“Alongside this, we are developing a resource plan on dealing with the backlog of visits once lockdown finishes and national advice permits us to conduct routine inspections once more.”