Advice to New Food Businesses

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Advice to New Businesses

Establishing a food business is not just a question of ensuring that there is a market for the products you intend to sell. There are a number of areas of legislation that you must consider in order for the business to comply with the law and some of these are as follows: -

Registration of the business as a food business

Regulation (EC) 852/2004 Article 6 (2) and The Food Hygiene (England) Regulation's state that Food businesses must register with the appropriate competent authority (Local Authority), at least 28 days before opening. If you are not sure whether you should be registered or not, complete the form and send to the food team, where someone will contact you with more details.

Approval of premises

Some categories of food business require either approval or licence from the Local Authority in order to trade. Approvals are required by businesses such as producers of meat products, meat preparation's, milk and dairy products and fish products. Licences are required by business that propose to street trade. It is an offence to trade without the proper approval or licence. Advice concerning licensing or approval can be obtained by contacting the Food Team on 01253 658658 or by e-mail at commercial@fylde.gov.uk

Planning permission/Building control

If you are starting a new food business or making alterations to an existing business you may need permission from the Local Authority Planning Department. It is always a good idea, even if the business is already functioning as a food business, to check that the appropriate permissions are in place prior to purchase/lease of a premises for trading as a food business. Fylde Borough Council Planning Department can be contacted on 01253 658658 or click on the link to the planning pages.

Food legislation

The main legislation controlling the activity of food businesses are Regulation's (EC) 178/2002, (EC) 852/2004, (EC) 853/2004, (EC) 854/2004 and The Food Hygiene (England) Regulation's. These regulation's come into force on 1st January 2006, as part of this all businesses must put in place, implement and maintain written procedures based on food safety Hazard Analysis Critical Control Procedure (HACCP) principals. To find out more information on this the Food Standards Agency has introduced a Safer Food Better Business Scheme, which sets out a template for small catering businesses on the HACCP principles, click the link at the bottom of the Food Safety page.

Regulation's (EC) 853/2004 are for product specific premises which require approval. These replace all the previous vertical legislation e.g The Meat Products (Hygiene) Regulation's 1994, along with revoking the Butcher Shop Licensing Legislation. If you are a producer of products of animal origin (meat, fish and dairy products) and supply to other than solely to the final consumer then these regulation's will probably apply to you and you should therefore seek approval from the Authority prior to trading.

Trade Organisation's

Some trade organisation's produce Industry Guides to Good Hygiene Practice that we as enforcement office's must recognise in carrying out our inspections. One example of this is the Catering Guide but there are many others for specific sectors. The Food Team can advise you on whether a guide exists for your business and how a copy can be obtained. Please note that the new Guides which reflect the changes in legislation will not be available until summer 2006. For further information ring 01253 658658 or e-mail commercial@fylde.gov.uk

Provision of Sanitary Accommodation

Suitable sanitary accommodation must be available in all food businesses which is adequately separated from the food handling operation. Fylde Council's Policy can be found here  Where you are operating a large food business it may be necessary to provide more toilets. Guidelines to the number of toilets required can be found in British Standard 6465 1984.

Provision of Late Night Refreshment

If your business intends to sell hot food or drink, after 11.00pm, then you will require a Licence under the Licensing Act 2003. Advice and application forms can be obtained from the Licensing section on 01253 658658 or by email at licensing@fylde.gov.uk.

 Health & Safety at Work Act 1974

You will have a duty as an employer to assess the risk presented by your business activities to staff, customers and anyone else who is affected by your business. If you employ 5 or more people then you must have a written Health and Safety policy and risk assessment. Advice leaflets are available from the Health and Safety Section on 01253 658658 or by e-mail at commercial@fylde.gov.uk . For further information contact the Health and Safety Executive.

Environmental Protection Act 1990

You must ensure that your business does not cause a Statutory Nuisance to others. A Statutory Nuisance can occur through a number of factors e.g. smoke, fumes, noise, dust etc.. More information can be obtained from the Pollution Team on 01253 658658 or by e-mail at envprotection@fylde.gov.uk

Environmental Protection Act 1990 (Duty of Care)

You must make adequate arrangements for the safe storage and disposal of your waste so as to prevent a nuisance. Disposal of your waste should be carried out by a registered waste contractor or by yourself at an approved site. Business waste should not be disposed of with domestic refuse.

Details of Fylde Borough Council’s Trade Waste Collection Service can be obtained on 01253 658658 or by email at tradewaste@fylde.gov.uk

Liquor Licence

If it is your intention to sell or supply alcoholic beverages or provide public entertainment/facilities such as music and dancing, then it is likely that you will require a licence from this Authority. Further details can be obtained from the licensing pages on this website or by contacting the Licensing Section on 01253 658658 or by email at licensing@fylde.gov.uk