Twenty chip shops are frying high after reeling in gold and platinum awards in recognition of the work they are doing to produce healthier chips.
As part of St Helens Council’s Chip Fryer Awards, introduced in 2014, seven fish and chips shops across the borough have achieved a Gold award, and an impressive 13 establishments have gone on to claim Platinum status for adopting certain cooking and preparation processes which results in their chips containing less saturated fat.
Methods to achieve the gold award include cooking chunkier cut chips at a higher temperature, using hotter cooking oil and reducing the amount of salt – while in order to achieve Platinum status, businesses must have already achieved the Gold award and meet additional criteria such as filtering oil daily and using separate fryers for meat products.
Representatives from Robins Lane Chippy, Newton Fish Bar, The Tasty Corner, Marg’s Chippy, Nelson Chippery, Blackbrook Supper Bar, Crispy Cod (Haydock) and Haydock Supper Bar attended a presentation ceremony in the Council Chamber at St Helens Town Hall where they received a framed certificate for them to display in their premises to show their customers.
The event also saw the launch of the council’s new award, the ‘Healthier Options St. Helens Takeaway’ (HOST) scheme, in which businesses sign a pledge to state that they will gradually work towards reducing salt or fat across their menus.
These changes could include preparation and cooking methods or the option to purchase smaller portions and offering water as
part of the meal deal.
Seven businesses to date have signed up to the HOST pledge which requires selected food samples to be sent to a laboratory to be analysed before a salt or fat reduction level can be agreed.
Those businesses are:
• Moss Bank Express, Dalehead Place
• Tasty Corner, Greenfield Road
• Marie’s Plaice, Elephant Lane
• Billinge Supper Bar, Main Street
• Dial-a Pizza, Sutton Oak Drive
• Millon Tandoori, Duke Street
• Pizza Perfect, Church Road, Haydock
If the agreed reduction in salt and fat is met, the business is given the full HOST award.
The HOST award is the brainchild of St Helens Council’s Community and Business Health Promotions Officer, Teresa Mercer.
Commenting on all of the businesses achievements, Teresa said: “The council recognises that all food businesses in the borough have an important part to play in ensuring healthier options are available to their customers, and it is great to see that so many of these businesses are on board with our Chip Fryer and HOST awards to allow this to happen.
“Just because a meal contains less salt and fat, it doesn’t mean that it loses its delicious taste.
“The response from registered businesses has been phenomenal, with a couple of fish and chips in the borough even offering gluten free fish and chips.
“We hope to see even more businesses take part in these awards.”
To find out more, or to see if your business meets the criteria for either the Chip Fryer or HOST award visit: