A TAKEAWAY that has been one star rated for nearly four years has been downgraded to a rare zero star rating after its latest inspection.

Happy Taste, a Chinese takeaway in Orchard Street, has received the lowest possible food hygiene rating, which Food Standards Agency (FSA) inspectors commonly say reflects failures across the board and means 'urgent improvement is necessary'.

Worcester City Council has confirmed the FSA, whose inspectors carried out the inspection on April 14, is allowing the venue to stay open but it now faces pending enforcement action.

The FSA report has not been released to the paper, due to this ongoing action, but a city council spokesman said the takeaway was not being closed as zero "does not mean automatic closure".

The spokesman added there are specific ‘imminent risk’ conditions that need to be met before a formal closure is made, and as the threshold had been met in this case Happy Taste can continue to trade.

The latest overview of the inspectors' report, published on the FSA website, said major improvement was necessary in the categories of hygienic handling of food, the cleanliness and condition of facilities and building, and the management of food safety (ensuring checks were in place to ensure food sold is safe to eat).

The Worcester News first reported on the takeaway in May 2017 when it was given a one star rating, which meant at the time it required 'major improvement'.

It has continued to be on the one star list ever since, including after another inspection in March 2018.

FSA scheme ratings available range from zero to five, and each food business must display the FSA information on their venue and online.

Helen Cameron, Food Safety Manager at Worcestershire Regulatory Services, said: “The food hygiene ratings are about putting power into the hands of the public because they can see at a glance the standard of hygiene in restaurants, cafes, take-aways and food retailers.

"We encourage people to alert us to any issues they find at food outlets on 01905 822799 or food.gov.uk.”

All information published is based on results on the FSA website as of May 13, 2021, and inspections are listed as the latest carried out.

The Worcester News approached Happy Taste, but no one was available for comment.

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