smallbusiness.co.uk: Helping your business think big

Email a Friend

I 'm considering running a small catering business from my home. Are there rules and regulations which I have to meet.?

You need to get in touch with the Environmental Health Service, Trading Standards Officer and Planning Department of your local authority.

All food businesses must register with the local authority (Food Safety Act). Registration involves filling in a simple form and there is no fee payable. Your local authority should then inspect your kitchen to ensure that the risks to the general public from food poisoning are minimised.

Food handlers have to be trained to the right level for their jobs. So if you want to run a home-based catering business you should probably have some sort of training such as a certificate in basic food hygiene.

Businesses need to be operated to the standards laid down in the Food Safety Regulations. But these regulations, for example, would stipulate that food preparation surfaces and equipment should be easy to clean, be kept clean and be kept in good repair. There are requirements on the correct temperature for chilled food, on the storage and transport of food, on washing facilities, on pets, and lighting and ventilation.

Foods have to be properly labelled, with the name of the food, a list of the ingredients, a 'use by' of 'best before' date and so on. But your Trading Standards Office should be able to give you better information.
Unless you are going to have lots of visitors to the house or producing large quantities of food, you may not need to get planning permission. But check with the Planning Department.

A government website, www.defra.gov.uk, has some additional useful information on issues concerning food and drink.

See also: Government helps to get business up and running

Previous article

A Guide to Running a Business from Home

Next article

Top 10 Property tips

Post a comment

Related

Guide | Office & home working

Working from home

News | Management

Government helps to get business up and running

News | Opportunities

Government helps to get business up and running

News | Management

What insurance do I need for a home-based business?

Small Business Offers

More from Small Business

Starting a Business
Actionable financial advice from three tech start-ups

Actionable financial advice from three tech start-ups

Nigel Breddy speaks to three businesses about the early-stage financial difficulties they experienced and the...  

Financing a Business
Should I charge my clients VAT?

Should I charge my clients VAT?

I sell lightbulbs and my turnover is less than £85,000. I buy from my supplier...  

News
Pub sector bullish with higher revenues and increase in younger landlords  

Pub sector bullish with higher revenues and increase in younger landlords  

The UK pub industry has seen a rise in turnover and injection of new owners...  

Blog
Do small businesses still need banks?

Do small businesses still need banks?

As the alternative finance sector continues to grow at a rapid rate, Paul Mildenstein considers...