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Food establishments


If you are thinking of starting a food business, you can contact us about anything from health and safety, to licensing or waste issues.

Advice for existing food businesses

If you decide to adapt or change anything regarding your food business you need to let us know, as you may need to review how you carry out your activities and update your policies and procedures.  

To help ensure such activities are carried out safely, please contact the Environmental Services Commercial Team for advice and guidance:

How do I start a food business?

When you start a new food business, or take over an existing business, you must register the business at least 28 days before you start trading.

Registration is free and cannot be refused. If you are already trading and have not yet registered, you need to register as soon as possible as this is a legal requirement.

Below are examples of types of operations that require registration. This list is not exhaustive:

  • restaurants, cafes and takeaways
  • retail shops selling food
  • making food and selling from your home
  • catering businesses run from home, mobile catering including marquees, food stalls, food pop-ups and food vans
  • nurseries, schools and care homes
  • distance selling, mail order and food delivery, including food supplied online or through social media channels or marketplaces
  • fishing vessels

Once you have registered, you must make sure the information is kept up to date. You should tell us if you:

  • decide not to start trading
  • make significant changes to your operating model, such as selling food online or from a mobile unit, or diversifying your business
  • plan to close your food business

If you are unsure whether you need to register or to inform us of any changes, please contact us.

Further information and guidance about starting a food business is available from the Food Standards Agency (FSA) (opens new window).

Food safety training

If you operate a food business, you must ensure that food handlers receive appropriate supervision and training in food hygiene.

The law does not require food handlers to hold a food hygiene certificate to prepare or sell food, however it can be used to help demonstrate that staff have been given training.

The Food Standards Agency offers the following free online training:

Does my food business need to be approved?

Find out if you need to become an approved food premises and how to apply.

Businesses required by law to be an approved food premises

If your business makes, prepares or handles food of animal origin such as meat, fish or dairy, and supplies it to other businesses and not directly to the public, you may need to apply to us to become an approved food premises.

The types of premises that by law have to be approved include:

  • meat processing or preparation plants
  • minced meat processing operations or mechanically separated meat processing plants
  • cold stores
  • manufacturers of meat, dairy, egg or fish products

This is different to our normal food registration requirements.

Applying for approval

If you think your food business may need to be approved, please contact Environmental Health.

Alternatively, you can use our  Application for approval of a food business (PDF) [54KB] (opens new window)  form to apply.

How do I request a new food hygiene rating?

If you wish to have a new food hygiene rating after carrying out the required work after a previous food hygiene inspection, you can request a revisit by filling out our application form.

There is an administrative fee of £190.

What toilet facilities do I need to provide for the public in my food premises?

If you provide any seating for people to eat and drink at your premises, you must provide public toilets and hand washing facilities for those people to use.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council has adopted a Code for the provision of customer toilets in eating and drinking establishments (PDF) [79KB] (opens new window) . This code has been produced to ensure adequate toilet facilities are provided within eating and drinking establishments within the Borough of Great Yarmouth. The code covers any premises or establishments used in the sale of food or drink to members of the public for consumption at the place of sale, such as cafes, restaurants, licensed pubs, bars and clubs.

How can I find out about the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme?

If you are a food business and you wish to check your food hygiene rating, appeal your rating because you feel it was unfair or wrong and/or you would like the opportunity to request a revisit when improvements have been made in order to be reassessed for a new rating, you can find out how to do this on the Food Standards Agency (opens new window) website.

Complete a low risk food establishment questionnaire

If you have received a request to complete a low risk food establishment questionnaire please click this link to complete a low risk food establishment questionnaire.

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