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Food business registration

Registration of premises used for a food business (including market stalls, delivery vehicles and other moveable structures) is required by law.

To register, please fill in the registration of food premises form.

Who needs to register?

If you run a food business, e.g. storing, selling, distributing or preparing food, you will need to register with the Food Safety Team.

This includes food organisations that donate food such as charities and homeless shelters. If you have any questions please contact the Food Safety Team for further information (contact details below).

Food premises include:

  • restaurants

  • hotels

  • cafes

  • shops

  • supermarkets

  • staff canteens

  • kitchens in offices

  • warehouses

  • guest houses

  • delivery vehicles

  • buffet cars on trains

  • market and other stalls

  • hot dog and ice cream vans.

Vehicles

If you use vehicles for your food business in connection with permanent premises such as a shop or warehouse, you only need to tell us 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 us where they are normally kept.

New food businesses

Anyone starting a new food business must register with the Council at least 28 days before doing so.

Exemptions

The majority of premises have to be registered. Please contact us if you want to find out if you are required to register.

Certain food premises need to be approved instead of registered. These are usually premises that supply foods of animal origin to other businesses. There are specific legal requirements these businesses must comply with.

Please contact us if your business may require approval.

How do I register?

Registration cannot be refused and is free of charge. The registration form must be sent to us and if the form is sent to the wrong address, your application will not take effect until it is received at the proper place.

If you use premises in more than one borough, you must register with each separately.

To avoid any delay, make sure you tick all the boxes that 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.

What happens to the information given on the form?

The Council will enter the details on the register. A register of addresses and the type of business carried out is open to inspection by the general public.

Records of the other information provided will not be publicly available and will not be disclosed outside of the Council, local government departments and Government agencies. The details will be used for the purpose of registration, enforcement and the protection of public funds.

What do I need to do if there are any changes?

Once you have registered with the Council, you only need to notify us if:

  • there is a change of proprietor (business owner)

  • the nature of the business changes

  • there is a change of the address at which moveable premises are kept.

The new proprietor (or business owner) will have to complete an application form. If the Council wishes to change the entry in the register because of information it receives from someone else, you will be given 28 days notice and an opportunity to comment on the proposed change.

Please note that planning permission may be required if premises are being converted to be used as food premises (where they have not been used as such before).​

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