Food hygiene ratings advice for businesses

Your right to appeal

What is the purpose of the appeal?

Following a hygiene inspection of your premises by a food safety officer from your local authority you will be told in writing - either at the time or within 14 days (this includes weekends and public holidays) - what your food hygiene rating is. If you think that the rating is wrong or unfair – in other words, it does not reflect the hygiene standards at the time of inspection – you can appeal against this.

It is a good idea to speak informally first of all to the food safety officer that undertook the inspection of your premises - you will be given the contact details for this officer when you are notified about your rating. This will help you to understand how your rating was worked out and to see if  you still want to appeal it. If you do still think the rating given is wrong or unfair, you can appeal. Please note that any discussions you have do not change the deadline within which the appeal must be made.

You must make your appeal in writing. You can do this by completing a standard form or you can send a letter or an email.

Your right to appeal

Please use the appeal form below and return it to the Lead Officer for Food Safety.

You should send your completed form, letter or email to Harborough District Council, The Symington Building, Adam and Eve Street, Market Harborough, LE16 7AG. Email:

You have 21 days (including weekends and bank holidays) from the date of receipt of the notification of your rating to lodge an appeal.

If you do not appeal within this time, your local authority will publish your food hygiene rating online at

What happens next and when will I know the result?

If you make an appeal, will show that your food hygiene rating is ‘awaiting publication’.

The Lead Officer for food or his/her designated deputy, or the Lead Officer or his/her designated deputy in another authority that is also operating the FHRS, will review your case. The officer that gave the rating will not consider your appeal. In some circumstances, a further visit to your premises may be required.

You will be notified of the result of the appeal within a maximum of 21 days from the date that the appeal was received by your local authority. Once you have been notified of the result of your appeal, your rating will be published online at

What if I don’t agree with the outcome of the appeal?

You can challenge the decision by judicial review. Even if you decide to do this, your rating will still be published at

If you think that the local authority has not followed processes properly, you can use the council’s complaints procedure (including taking the matter to the Local Government Ombudsman where appropriate).