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Information for food businesses

Starting a food business


Ensure the premises which you intend operating from have the necessary planning consent.

If you are carrying out structural works to the premises you may need building regulations approval.


You must ensure your premises are registered with Rushcliffe Borough Council 28 days before opening. Registration is a simple process and there is no charge to register premises. Registration does not need to be renewed periodically and local authorities cannot refuse to register premises. If you are operating a mobile food business the vehicle must be registered with the Council of the borough where it is stored overnight.

Complete a Food premises registration form and send it to: Environmental Health, Rushcliffe Borough Council, Rushcliffe Arena, Rugby Road, West Bridgford, Nottingham, NG2 7YG. You can apply online to register your food business. Please note: to apply for this licence you will have to register on the Government Gateway first.  

Most food businesses will only require registration. However, if you are operating a business producing and/or supplying products of animal origin to other food businesses, you may be required to apply for approval to use your establishment for that purpose. Apply online for a licence or fill in the Approval of a food business form. Products of animal origin include meat products, fishery products, minced meat, meat preparations etc.

  • If you cook meat pies in your premises and only sell them to members of the public you will not require approval
  • If you cook meat pies and only sell them to other businesses such as restaurants, shops etc, then you would require approval
  • If you cook meat pies and supply members of the public and food businesses, you may require approval. If approval is required, you will have to adhere to additional requirements with regard to structure, layout, health marking etc. This is a complicated area of food law and each case needs to be looked at individually. Please contact us to discuss your operation if you think approval may be required.

Exemption is also granted to premises used only by businesses already registered or licensed under certain schemes connected with food legislation and businesses that pose a very low risk to health. For a complete list of exemptions, please contact us. The only changes about registered premises which must be notified to the local authority are a change of proprietor or a change in the nature of the business.  Although premises may be exempt from registration this does not mean that they are exempt from the provisions of the Food Safety Act 1990, nor does it mean that they do not need to comply with food hygiene legislation.

Safer Food Better Business

Safer Food, Better Business by the Food Standards AgencyThe Safer Food, Better Business pack has been developed by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) to help small catering businesses (eg  restaurants, cafes and takeaways) comply with hygiene regulations that were brought in from 1 January 2006.

The Safer Food, Better Business pack is no longer free. It can be downloaded from the Food Standards Agency website. We can provide a black and white copy, please check our fees and charges information for costs.

Once you have demonstrated your safe methods to ensure food safety, daily checks recorded in the diary supplied in the pack should only take a few minutes each day. Your business and customers will benefit from this valuable food safety approach.


Arrangements will need to be made for the collection of your trade waste.