Food safety for new food businesses


All food premises must be registered with the local council, it's free and online. You need to register 28 days before you open your business. Registration can't be refused.

Who needs to register

Food premises means anywhere you store, sell, distribute or prepare food. This includes:

  • restaurants
  • hotels
  • cafés
  • shops
  • supermarkets
  • staff canteens
  • delivery vehicles
  • market stalls
  • food brokers
  • domestic premises and other stalls.

If you are a mobile business, you need to register in the local authority where you store your vehicle. If you use vehicles in connection with permanent premises, such as a shop or restaurant, you don't need to register each vehicle separately.

If you operate in more than one local authority area, you need to register with each of them separately.

Who doesn't need to register

You do not need to register if you generally provide food less than once a month unless you are:

  • serving a large number of people
  • serving young, elderly, or unwell people
  • handling high risk foods.

There are some premises which are exempt from registration. If you think you're exempt, contact the food and safety team.

If you're not sure if you need to register, contact the food and safety team.

Next steps

Once you register, an officer will contact you to discuss your business and if necessary arrange a visit to make sure everything is safe.

Information on what the officer will check for is available on the food hygiene rating for businesses page.