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Registering your food business

Register your food business online

Registration of food businesses

All food businesses must be registered with their local authority at least 28 days before they open or change ownership.

Registration is simple and it's free.

"Food business" has a very wide definition and includes any activity where "food" is supplied whether carried on for profit or not. Examples of food businesses that need to be registered:

  • Restaurants, canteens, cafes, takeaways, hotels, guest houses, pubs and clubs (including those that only serve drink), and other caterers.
  • Caring establishments, e.g. care homes and hospitals.
  • Educational establishments, e.g. schools and colleges.
  • Community/church halls where a kitchen is used by the owners to provide food.
  • Mobile food vehicles.
  • Food manufacturers and packers.
  • Food retailers and wholesalers.

"Food" also has a very wide definition and includes:

  • drink,
  • articles and substances of no nutritional value which are used for human consumption,
  • chewing gum and other products of a like nature and use and articles, and
  • substances used as ingredients in the preparation of food.

If you are not sure if your business needs to be registered please contact the Commercial Team.

There are two ways of registering your food business. To register online please click on one of the following links:

    You may also print off and fill in a form and sent it to the Commercial Team to the address on the form.

 A valid application will be processed by NNDC within seven days of receipt.

 Food premises register

You can download the Food Premises Register for a complete list of food businesses registered with NNDC.

Notes on food premises register:

  • registered childminders are excluded
  • no address is given for: 
    • mobile food businesses
    • market stalls
    • outside caterers
    • home producers - e.g. making jams/cakes, producing food for local village hall or farmers markets

Lists of Approved Premises

Food businesses that need approval before they are allowed to operate are those that:

  • sell most, or all, of their food to other businesses such as retailers, cafes, restaurants, pubs; and
  • produce products of animal origin, which are defined as -
    • Minced meat and meat preparations
    • Meat products
    • Live bivalve molluscs
    • Fishery products
    • Raw milk and dairy products
    • Eggs and egg products

Lists of these premises can be found at the Food Standards Agency (FSA) website.

If your food business involves any of the following, you will need a licence:

  • Sale of alcohol (on or off the premises)
  • Late night refreshment (sale of hot food and drink between 11pm and 5am)
  • Regulated entertainment (includes plays, films, some sporting activities, music)
  • One-off events (temporary event notices) for any of the above

See alcohol & entertainment licensing for further information on the type of licence you may require.