Food Business Registration

A new food business is required, by law, to be registered with us at least 28 days before opening up for the first time.

You must register with us if you store, prepare, distribute or sell food on premises. Food premises include:

  • restaurants 
  • cafes 
  • hotels 
  • shops 
  • canteens 
  • market stalls 
  • mobile catering vans 
  • food delivery vans.

This is simply a registration procedure and will not be refused by us. Registration will be completed within 28 days of receipt of a signed and correctly completed application form.

Once you have returned your registration form you can commence trading, unless you are planning to produce food made from animal products that you are then going to sell on to other caterers or retailers.

You must comply with all the relevant food hygiene legislation to ensure you produce food safely and hygienically. This means ensuring good standards of hygiene throughout, good structure and cleanliness and documenting how you keep food safe.

We will acknowledge receipt of your completed registration form in writing with a letter explaining what will happen next.

If you use vehicles which are associated with permanent premises such as a shop, you only need to tell us how many vehicles you use. If you use catering vehicles but have no permanent registered food business, you must tell us where that vehicle is usually kept.

If you have more than one business, but some are in a different local authority area, you will need to register that business with the appropriate local authority.

How do I register?

Complete the Food Business registration form (Word document, 116kb) and return it to us at the address given in the form.

There is no charge to register your food business.

Changes to your business

You must ensure that the information you supply is kept up to date. You must let us know if there are any significant changes to your registration.

This includes changes to the activities carried out at the food business, change of business name, change of ownership, sale or closure of the business.

Summary of the regulations

  • Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013 
  • Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004 on the hygiene of foodstuffs Article 6 
  • Regulation (EC) No. 853/2004

What happens to the information given on the forms?

The information you provide us about the business is placed on a public register which is, by law, available for public viewing. The register contains business names, addresses and the nature and type of the business. No personal details, other than the food business operator’s name, are placed on the public register. Any other information provided will not be publicly available unless it is covered by The Freedom of Information Act.

The information collected is used to categorise all food businesses to determine the inspection frequency for the type of business. High risk food businesses are inspected more frequently than those that represent a low risk to public health.

Approval for handling products of animal origin

Some manufacturers handling products of animal origin may need to be approved by Bradford Council or the Food Standards Agency, rather than registered. If you are uncertain whether your business needs to be approved or registered, contact us to find out.

When will I receive an inspection ?

You will not receive an inspection immediately after registration, but you will enter our inspection programme. However, there may be some delay before you receive a visit.

Most of our inspections are unannounced, but there will be occasions when we will need to make an appointment. This will depend on the nature of the business.

National Food Hygiene Rating Scheme

Most registered food business come under this scheme. As a new business, you will not receive a rating until you have had your first inspection. However, as you will not receive an inspection immediately you can request an ‘Awaiting Inspection’ sticker to display in your premises.

What to expect when the inspector calls

The inspector should show you their identification.

They will look at how you operate your business to see if you have identified potential food hazards, and that you are complying with the Regulations.

They will do this by observing practices, questioning staff, assessing documented records and assessing the cleanliness of the environment. This may even mean that they will take samples, swabs and photographs.

On site, officers will:

  • advise on any hygiene breaches 
  • advise what you need to do to comply with the law 
  • identify good practices.

Following an inspection, officers should:

  • leave a report of inspection on site and may write to you in more detail giving reasons for any action to be taken 
  • give you a reasonable amount of time for changes to be made (unless there is an immediate risk to health)
  • give details of how to appeal your food hygiene rating and the other safeguards applicable to your business.

Our enforcement options

Our inspectors are authorised and have ‘Powers of Entry’ to commercial premises at all reasonable times without giving prior notice.

The type of Enforcement action taken will depend upon the severity of breaches of the legislation. The Authority takes a graduated approach to enforcement:

Enforcement can include:

  • Formal letter outlining breaches of legislation and recommended good practice 
  • Hygiene Improvement Notice - sets out what you need to do to comply with the law, with a timescale for compliance 
  • Detain or seize food if it is considered unfit / harmful to health 
  • Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice - served when there is an imminent risk to health. This notice can forbid the use of premises, equipment or a process (must be confirmed by a court) 
  • Formal legal action - where there are serious or repeated breaches of legislation this may lead to a prosecution or simple caution.

Stay Connected

You can keep up to date with new legislation and receive regular food safety bulletins by signing up to our food safety for businesses e-bulletin.