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Approved Food Premises

What is Approval?
If you intend to set up business as a caterer or food retail outlet selling directly to the public, you will normally only need to be registered. However, if you intend to set up a business that manufactures or handles (e.g. slicing and re wrapping) products of animal origin for sale onto other businesses (rather than sale direct to the final consumer), your premises may have to be approved instead. Approval is legally required to be obtained before you will be allowed to trade.

To obtain approval, you will need to meet certain standards, relating to both structure of your premises and hygienic food handling practices. There is also a requirement for a documented food safety management system to show how you ensure that the food you produce is safe.


Which premises need to be Approved?
All food premises making, preparing or handling food products of animal origin are required to be approved unless they meet specific exemption criteria. If your food business supplies food of animal origin direct to the final consumer (i.e. the person who eats the food) then you are not required to be approved. However, if you supply these foods to a catering premises such as a pub or a retailer, then you will require approval.

Your business may be exempted on the basis that the supply of these foods to another premises is on a marginal, localised and restricted basis.

Marginal is interpreted to be a small part of your establishment’s business usually up to a quarter (25%)of the business in terms of food or less than 2 tonnes in terms of meat per week.

Localised is interpreted to be sales within the supplying establishments own county plus the greater of either the neighbouring county or counties or 30 miles from the boundary of the supplying establishments county.

Restricted is interpreted as concerning only certain types of products being made or establishments being supplied.

As you will see the determination of whether approval is required is a complicated one and will depend on the specific circumstances of the business. If you are unsure as to whether you require approval, please contact the Environmental Health Commercial Team to discuss the matter further.

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