Registering a new food business
If you are planning to open a new food business, or take over an existing business as the new food business operator, you will need to register the business with us.
All food businesses/operations are required to register. ‘Food’ includes drink, chewing gum and any substance, including water, intentionally incorporated into the food during its manufacture, preparation or treatment. So even if you just sell drinks, you will need to be registered with us. There are some exceptions to low risk, or occasional activities, such as tea and biscuits at coffee mornings, or one off events.
You also need to register if you are a food broker. Food Brokers sell food products from various producers and manufacturers to other wholesale and retail food businesses. Check if you are a food broker
How to register your food business
All types of food business have a legal requirement to register at least 28 days before opening. It is free to register the business.
Once you have registered with us, as long as you can produce food safely, you can start trading. You do not have to wait until you have been inspected.
Certain types of food businesses that produce dairy products, meat products, fishery products, egg products, minced meat or meat preparation may require a different type of registration, called ‘Approval’.
If you think that your new food business falls into this category, you must contact the Food Safety Team as soon as possible – food businesses that require 'Approval' cannot start trading until approval has been granted.
When setting up a new food business you may also wish to contact one or more of the following for further information:
- Trading Standards (e.g. food labelling)
- Market stalls
- City Centre trading: 024 7622 4927
- Street trading licence (outside the city centre)
- Licensing (for both alcohol and food businesses open after 11pm)
Food and Safety team
Open 9am–5pm Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays)Address: PO Box 15