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Craven District Council

Running a food business

If you're running a food business here's what you need to think about.

Food safety legislation makes it an offence for anyone to sell or process food for sale which is unsafe. They also place an obligation on businesses to ensure that their activities are carried out in a hygienic way.

We aim to ensure that:

  • food businesses are approved or registered
  • manufacturers and retailers of food are regularly inspected
  • restaurants and other food premises meet strict hygiene standards
  • food is safe to eat

An estimated five million people suffer from food poisoning in England and Wales each year. Running a food business means that you have a particular responsibility in protecting the health of your customers.

Food safety management systems

If you are running a food business you are legally required to have an approved written food safety management system in place to ensure food is safe for customers to eat.

You should think about what might go wrong with the food that you sell and what you must do to ensure it is safe for your customers. You should put in place a system based on food safety practices that you are familiar with, in line with general Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP). The level of documentation required will depend on the nature and size of your business.

Food Standards Agency

You can get more information, safety tips and hygiene advice on the Food Standards Agency website

Safer Food, Better Business

Safer food, better business (SFBB) has changed. It is a national food safety management system aimed at helping smaller food businesses to put in place food safety management procedures and comply with food hygiene regulations.

You can download a new printer-friendly pack here

What is new?

  • complete refresh and re-brand of the SFBB Caterers' pack
  • whole new safe method on managing food allergens in the Management section of the pack, and emphasis on allergens where applicable throughout the pack
  • new section on managing food waste in the cleaning section
  • new safety point on not defrosting chicken under running water and a link to more information on Campylobacter on the FSA website
  • additional information on barbecuing and shellfish labelling requirements
  • additional information for suppliers and Ccontractors in relation to food fraud

Food business operators that have implemented previous versions of the SFBB pack will continue to be compliant with the law and do not need to change to this updated version. However you are recommended to update your pack when you review your system.

E.coli 0157: control of cross-contamination

Guidance for food businesses to clarify the steps that they need to take to control the risk of food becoming contaminated by E.coli O157 and what businesses should be doing to protect their customers.

You can find out more here.

Food safety leaflets

We have compiled some useful information about food safety and hygiene in the following downloadable leaflets;

Starting a food business

Useful information about starting up a food business can be found here.


The key responsibility for food business owners is to understand what food hazards exist and show what action they would take to ensure they are producing and handling food safely. A free pack called Safer Food, Better Business, developed by the Food Standards Agency is available to help small businesses comply with the law.

Further information can be found on the Food Standards Agency website .

Food business operators are required by law to ensure that food handlers receive appropriate supervision and training in food hygiene in line with their work activity and should enable them to handle food safely.

In the UK food handlers don't have to hold a food hygiene certificate to prepare or sell food, although many food businesses will prefer that they do.  The necessary skills may be obtained through on-the-job training, self-study or relevant prior experience.  UK food hygiene certificates don't have an expiry date.  It is left to the discretion of the food business operator or environmental health officer to decide whether a refresher course is needed.  This may be a result of changes to legislation or technological developments in food hygiene.

Training Providers within Craven:

Tyro Training

Crescent House. Keighley Road. Skipton. BD23 2LP

Tel 01756 692798

Verner Wheelock

4 Stable Courtyard, Broughton Hall Business Park, SKIPTON, North Yorkshire, BD23 3AE

Tel: 01756 700802


Training videos

The Food Standards Agency have produced a number of training videos.

Online Training Providers

There are a number of online training providers including:


Primary Authority

Primary Authority is where a business can form a legal partnership with a local authority who will deal with regulatory compliance issues.

Primary Authority was established by the Regulatory and Enforcement Sanctions Act 2008.

Guidance notes for businesses

Any business, charity or other organisation that satisfies the criteria can join the scheme.  A business must either:

be regulated by two or more local authorities for relevant functions;or

have arrangements in place to share an approach to compliance with at least one other business, provided that the businesses are collectively regulated by more than one local authority for relevant function.

Relevant function could be for example, fair trading, food safety, health & safety or age restricted sales etc.

The scheme doesn't allow Primary Authorities to make a profit from these partnerships so the Better Regulation Delivery Officer (BRDO) audits all partnerships.

If you would like further information on developing a partnership with us, please contact us.