Food testing down 6.8% over the past year

There is a "huge variation" in food hygiene standards across the UK, according to a Which? investigation launched in the wake of the horse meat scandal.

Food testing by local authorities fell by 6.8% over the past year, the group found.

The investigation by the consumer group into 395 local authorities across the UK used Food Standards Agency data and found:

  • Bexley in London was the poorest performing local authority, with five other London councils in our bottom 10 (Ealing, Enfield, Harrow, Richmond upon Thames and Southwark).
  • Cherwell District Council in North Oxfordshire was rated as the best performing local authority.
  • No official hygiene sampling was carried out at all by Bexley, Christchurch, Isles of Scilly, Medway, Tamworth, West Lindsey and West Yorkshire in 2012/13.
  • The overall testing rate fell by 6.8% in 2013.
  • Testing for labelling and presentation fell by 16.2%

Read more: Shopping habits 'changed' by horse meat scandal


Supermarkets still feeling impact of horsemeat scandal

Almost one third of shoppers have lost in faith in their supermarket's ability to provide uncontaminated meat a year on from the horse meat scandal. It emerged horse meat DNA had been found in frozen burgers in mid-January last year.