Guidance on starting a new Food Business
The Food Standards Agency has produced a very
useful guide called ‘Starting Up’ on starting a food business.
You can find the information at the following link:
Standards Agency - Starting a food business
When starting a new food business there are 4 questions we would
1. Is the Food Business Registered? – All food
businesses are required to register their food business at least 28
days before opening. Registration will apply to most types of
food business, including catering businesses run from home and
mobile or temporary businesses, such as stalls and vans. Click here to register.
2. Is Planning Permission required? - The
local authority will be able to help if there are any issues with
regard to planning permission or change of use. Click here for Planning or if you wish to
trade from home
click here for further planning information.
3. Is Food Hygiene Training up to date? – Food
businesses should make sure that food handlers in a food business
are trained and or supervised/instructed in food matters in line
with their work activities. Further information on training can be
found at Link to training. Click here for
Food Hygiene Training.
4. Do you have a Food Safety Management System?
- All food businesses are required to have written systems in order
to show how they make sure the food they provide is safe to eat.
Businesses can produce their own systems based on HACCP principles
or use a "Safer Food Better Business"
New Business Checklist
- Have you registered your business with us?
- Do the design, layout and construction of your premises meet
the legal requirements?
- Do you and your staff understand the principles of good food
- Have you and your staff had food hygiene training?
- Have you considered what food safety problems there could be at
each stage of your business?
- Have you put the necessary food safety procedures in place and
are you making regular checks to make sure they are working?
- Do you have a pest control contract?
- Do you have a refuse collection service?
- Have you considered Health and Safety and Fire
- Have you registered as self-employed?
- Do you need to register for VAT?
- Do you describe food and drink accurately?
- Do you need to apply for a licence to sell alcohol?
Advice for caterers and retailers
If you would like specific information for
your type of business, this is available at:
External link: Food
Standards Agency - Catering and retail
Advice for childminders
If you are considering setting up as a childminder, information
on the Food Standards Agency website will be of help. It also
includes advice for registered child carers on domestic premises
operating as food businesses and Safer Food, Better Business
information specifically for childminders:
External Link: Food
Standards Agency - Childminders
Advice for commerical catering from
Are you looking to run a food business
It is becoming increasingly popular to start and run a business
from your own home. When food is involved this can present a whole
range of new problems that need to be considered properly before
The laws on food safety apply just the same to a business run
from home as to any other commercial premises. See the guidance in
setting up a new food business above.
Guidance for businesses catering from home is available
Link: Starting up a
catering or cake baking business from home
Advice for mobile food businesses
We will often receive calls from traders hoping to set up in
business trading from a mobile food van in the area. The laws on
food safety apply just the same to a mobile food business as to any
other commercial premises. See the guidance in setting up a new
food business above.
Link: Advice for mobile
Guidance for Outdoor and Mobile Caterers
A Street Trading Policy is currently going through the
council’s adoption procedure and is likely to be in place in the
next few months.
Once it is adopted, if you plan to trade within the South
Staffordshire area you may require a street trading licence. This
will mean that street trading on any public parts of any of the
designated streets will need to apply for consent to trade.
Further information will be available in due course
National Food Hygiene Rating Scheme (Rate
Once you have registered with your Local Authority your business
will be programmed for a food safety
inspection. As part of the inspection your business will be
given a rating as part of the National Food Hygiene Rating Scheme.
In Staffordshire the rating and inspection report is published on
the Rate my Place website, linked to the national scheme.
The scoring criteria is explained further under the rating
Food Hygiene Rating Scheme
Link: Healthy Options
Food Hygiene Guide
External link: E.coli
Food Law Inspections
If you need any further information, advice or guidance
which is not provided on the website, please contact the Food &
Food & Safety Team
Telephone: 01902 696220