‘Scotland staffed to do almost twice as many food inspections as England does!’
Unably assisted by Mike Rumbles of the Scottish Lib Dems, STV reporters have turned the above good news into a confused bad news story. If you don’t think too hard, you might think 9 000 tests failed is a bad thing even if you notice that’s actually a bit less than 2 000 per year and that another 80 000 were carried out and resulted in passes.
You see, pay attention, lots of tests being carried out with 10% being caught and remedied is good news. The service is doing what it is supposed to do to protect customers and it’s doing it far better than is the case in England:
From Environmental Health News on 20th September 2018:
‘English local authorities are seriously falling behind their devolved neighbours when it comes to resourcing food inspections. The latest LAEMS figures published this week reveals that each Environmental Health professional inspecting food establishments in England is responsible for 345 premises annually while in Wales the figure is nearly half that at 175. In Northern Ireland, the figure is 238 premises per EHP while in Scotland it is 204.’
The Head of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health said:
‘In the devolved nations, they have the opportunity to resource food safety the way they think appropriate the difference is significant and that does concern us particularly on rising number of food premises to be covered and rising numbers of premises not being inspected.’