Setting up a food business can be a daunting task, with a wide range of legislation that must be complied with if you are not to fall foul of the law.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) hold a lot of relevant information on their website, including a booklet entitled 'Starting up - Your first steps to running a catering business', to help you through the process. Some key elements are as follows.
Food Establishment Registration
All food business establishments are legally obliged to register with their Local Authority before opening.
There is no charge and the registration cannot be refused. Once registered it is not necessary to re-register, unless there is a significant change in the business (such as a name change, or change of food business operator).
If your business is to be located within the Daventry district, please complete an Application to Register a Food Business Establishment form.
Food Businesses Producing Food of Animal Origin
Certain businesses must be approved by Daventry District Council to produce and sell foods of animal origin to other businesses. These products include meat products, minced meat and meat preparations, dairy products, fishery products and egg products. If you need to be approved you do not have to register, but please complete an Application for Approval of a Food Business form.
A series of meat related guidance notes are available on the Food Standards Agency website.
Food Hygiene Training
All food handlers must be trained commensurate to their work activities. The usual way for food handlers to be trained is to gain a Level 2 Award in Food Hygiene. Food business operators are also required to receive adequate training in the application of Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP).
Daventry District Council offers a number of Food Hygiene Training courses.
Remember that you are not obliged to train with Daventry District Council as many other bodies offer appropriate training.
Documented Food Safety Management System
The Food Standards Agency has introduced "Safer Food, Better Business" (SFBB) which is designed to enable smaller food businesses to comply with the hazard analysis requirement. A copy of the Safer Food, Better Business pack can be obtained free of charge by contacting us on the detail shown below. Further SFBB information can be found on the Food Standards Agency website.
FSA Scotland have published an alternative food safety management system called 'CookSafe'.
The Food Standards Agency has issued guidance for food businesses to clarify the steps that they need to take to control the risk of food becoming contaminated by E.coli O157 and what businesses should be doing to protect their customers.
Mobile Food Businesses
Legally, mobile food businesses must register with the local authority which covers the address where the vehicle or trailer is normally kept. This means that a mobile business registered with Daventry District Council may not trade in the district, but if it is normally kept here it will need to be registered with us.
If you plan to trade in the district you will need to apply for street trading consent.
Other Types of Food Business
There are certain types of food business that are not dealt with by Daventry District Council. These include slaughterhouses and meat cutting plants. These premises must be approved by the Food Standards Agency.