Starting a Food Business
How can I register my food business?
You must register your food business at least 28 days before you start trading. Registration is free.
If changes take place in your business, such as the selling and producing of other types of food, you will need to register the business again.
You can apply online at the GOV.UK website.
If you will be making, preparing and handling meat, fish, egg or dairy to supply to other businesses and not selling to the public yourself, you may require permission from us and not registration.
Please contact us whilst you are planning your business activity.
When will my application be processed?
We will acknowledge receipt of your application within 4 working days.
Will I need any other licence?
If you will be selling alcohol or staying open after 11pm, you will need a premises licence to permit you to do this.
What do I need to do after registering my business?
Once you have registered your business you should be aware that:
- a food inspection will be carried out and this will give you your first food hygiene rating;
- there are 14 allergens that you will need to tell your customers about;
- preventing food poisoning will be very important to your business; and
- you will need to advise our Business Rates service.
Food Standards Agency
The Food Standards Agency protect public health and make sure that food is safe. Their website offers guidance, advice and support to those who are starting a food business.
- Guidance for the approval of a food establishment - for meat, dairy, egg, fish, shellfish and animal produce establishments.
- Setting up a food business - advice on choosing premises, health and safety and managing and preparing food safely.
- General food law - there are general requirements that you need to be aware of.
- Food Safety Management System - safety management procedures and food hygiene regulations.
Where can I get business advice?
Before starting out in business, you may want some business advice from Wenta who offer free one-to-one support as well as free support and training. Wenta's Stevenage office is based at the Business and Technology Centre (BTC).
Environmental Health and Licensing
01438 242908 / 242916