Restaurants, cafes pubs and any food service business which continues to get excellent hygiene ratings could be in for a nice surprise.

The environmental health departments of all six of Worcestershire’s district councils could set up a scheme to give rewards to kitchens which get three consecutive Five star ratings.

The proposal will be made to the Worcestershire Regulatory Services board - the body which overseas the joint regulatory services used by all the authorities - at its meeting today, Thursday 21 June.

The idea is to try and encourage businesses to raise their game on cleanliness and hygiene using the carrot as well as the stick.

The proposal by the services environmental and trading standards manager David Mellors says: “We seem to spend a lot of time thinking about, and rightly taking action against, poor performers. This helps demonstrate to businesses that we are fair but firm in our dealings with the food business sector.

“We should shift some of our focus to rewarding and promoting our good businesses.”

Under the scheme, which has the working title of Triple 5 Award, will see businesses with three consecutive 5 ratings be presented with a certificate, with the possibility of positive press coverage, and if they carry on with high standards, could get ‘Plus 1’ , Plus 2’ and so on certificates which could be displayed at the business.

The idea, said Mr Mellors, is to “recognise the achievements of these businesses in maintaining standards but also incentivise others to follow suit.”

Jack Hunt, part of the management team at Saffrons Bistro in New Street liked the idea.

He said: “We’ve never had anything but 5 Star ratings since we started, 22 years ago now, but we’d take any encouragement we can get.

“It’s a good idea to get lots of restaurants and cafes to improve and keep standards high as a collective effort.

“If we all have a good reputation then that would be good for us all and bring people into the city.”