Nearly 84% of U.K. diners believe kitchen staff in restaurants don't wash hands before preparing food, and 88% of diners suspect that if a restaurant's bathroom is dirty, its kitchen will also be dirty, survey finds

BEDFORDSHIRE, England , November 17, 2011 (press release) – British restaurant guests do not have a very high opinion of the restaurant industry and restaurant hygiene.

This is one of the findings of this year's “Barometer of Public Washroom Opinion” from Tork, presented in connection with World Toilet Day on November 19.

No fewer than 65 per cent of UK diners have left a restaurant in recent years because it had a grubby appearance, while 88 per cent suspect that if the toilet is dirty, the kitchen will be dirty too.

A total of 500 UK respondents and 3,500 other Europeans took part in the survey. Around 84 per cent of respondents believe that kitchen staff do not wash their hands before preparing food.

Worse still, one in five respondents believes that cooks and other kitchen staff pick up food that has fallen on the floor and use it for cooking.

UK diners are most sceptical about the hygiene at local pubs and fast food restaurants, while hotel restaurants and upper-end pubs received significantly better scores.

In order for visitors to perceive that a restaurant is clean, it is important that the premises are tidy (66 per cent), that the toilet is clean (22 per cent) and that you can see into the kitchen (12 per cent).

Restaurant and workplace toilets are among the washrooms that respondents prefer to visit, while they prefer to avoid pubic toilets and train toilets.

The “Barometer of Public Washroom Opinion” is a regular annual activity conducted by Tork to spotlight hygiene in connection with the World Toilet Day. This year's survey focused on how the public perceives hygiene in restaurants.

The survey, which was conducted for Tork by Netigate, was conducted in eight European countries. The results were fairly similar whether the respondents lived in Sweden, UK, France, Germany, Finland, Poland, Belgium or the Netherlands.

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