Register Food Premises
NOTES ON REGISTRATION OF FOOD PREMISES
What is registration?
Registration of premises used for a food business (including market stalls, delivery vehicles and other moveable structures) is required by law. Registration allows local authorities to keep an up-to-date list of all those premises in their area so they can visit them when they need to. The frequency of the visits is determined by the scale and together with type of business its history of complaince with legislation.
Who needs to register?
If you run a food business for more than 5 days in any 5 consecutive weeks, you must tell (or arrange for someone else to tell) the local authority about any premises you use for storing, selling, distributing or preparing food. Food premises include restaurants, hotels, cafes, shops, supermarkets, staff canteens, warehouses, guest houses, delivery vehicles, buffet cars on trains, market and other stalls, hot dog and ice cream vans etc.
If you use vehicles for your food business in connection with permanent premises such as a shop or warehouse you only need to tell the local authority how many vehicles you have. You do not need to register each vehicle separately. If you have one or more vehicles but no permanent premises, you must tell the authority where they are normally kept.
Anyone starting a new food business must register with the local authority at least 28 days before doing so.
The majority of premises will have to be registered. However, certain premises are exempt from registration, e.g. some which are already approved for food law purposes, certain agricultural premises, motor cars, tents and marquees (but not stalls), some domestic premises and some village halls. You should contact your local authority if you think you might be exempt.
How do I register?
By filling in this online form. Registration cannot be refused and there is no charge. If you use premises in more than one local authority area, you must register with each authority separately.
You must tick all the boxes which apply to your business, answer all the questions and give all the information requested. Seasonal businesses operating for a certain period each year should give the dates between which they will be open. If you have any questions your local authority will help you. It is an offence to give information which you know is false.
What happens to the information given on the form?
The local authority will enter the details on its register. A register of addresses and the type of business carried on at each will be open to inspection by the general public. Records of the other information provided will not be publicly available.
Once you have registered with the local authority you only need notify them of a change of proprietor, if the nature of the business changes, or if there is a change of address at which moveable premises are kept. The new proprietor will have to complete an application form.
If the local authority wishes to change the entry in the register because of information which it receives from someone else you will begiven 28 days notice and an opportunity to comment on the proposed change.
These notes are provided for information only and should not be regarded as a complete statement of the law.