Food safety adviser, Dr Lisa Ackerley has published a white paper advising caterers that, when it comes to eggs, following some simple guidelines, such as specifying British Lion, can support a strong Food Hygiene Rating.
The Food Standards Agency’s (FSA) Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (FHRS) is used by local authority enforcement officers to rate a business according to the condition of its premises, its hygiene practices and whether the local authority is confident that its management of hygiene is effective. Display of the stickers is mandatory in Wales and Northern Ireland, but not in England, where stickers tend to be displayed only if a business has received a high score, either 4 or 5.
Dr Lisa Ackerley stated: “In 2017, new advice about egg handling and hygiene practices was sent to local authorities by the FSA*. The advice stated that for vulnerable groups, such as pregnant women, infants and the elderly, Lion eggs could be used in lightly cooked or even raw dishes as the risk was so low. However, the report did say that care still needed to be taken in catering settings to ensure that eggs did not become contaminated. Particular care was advised in relation to pooled eggs which are subsequently stored and are at a higher risk of cross contamination.
“Many businesses now stipulate in their FSMS that they only use Lion eggs because that is one less hazard being brought into the kitchen. Eggs can be contaminated with Salmonella, and the risk may increase with eggs from other countries, for example Poland**.
“If shell eggs are to be lightly cooked or served without cooking, then either Lion or pasteurised eggs must be specified to control the hazard. Otherwise, eggs must be cooked to 75°C for 30 seconds for safety.”
Visit egginfo.co.uk to read the full white paper, ‘Food Hygiene Ratings Scheme: one rotten egg could spoil your score’ authored by Dr Lisa Ackerley, PhD, BSc (Hons), CEnvH, FRSPH, Food Safety Adviser.