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Ashford Borough Council reminds all food businesses in its borough that they must register 28 days before opening

Published: 16/09/2022
Male and female chef working in a kitchen

A new campaign from the Food Standards Agency (FSA), supported by Ashford Borough Council is calling for all new food businesses to register through the Government website.

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen a huge increase in food businesses based in people’s homes. Since March 2020, 37% of new food ventures registering through the FSA’s digital service ‘Register a Food Business’, are run from domestic kitchens at private addresses. We also know that many are also failing to register. These sellers are potentially putting consumers at risk as they may have little knowledge of food safety.

All food businesses have a legal obligation to register 28 days prior to opening, it’s an offence not to do so. Businesses must register whether selling online, via social media sites, trade from a physical customer-facing premises or simply selling food from a home kitchen.

Without registration we cannot assess the nature of the business, provide appropriate advice or give a Food Hygiene Ratings where appropriate. We can also help home caterers and those who sell online to identify when their hobby may have developed into a food business.

Michael Jackson, Deputy Director - Head of Regulatory Compliance, at the FSA said: “Local Authorities need to know who is trading in their area and registration is an opportunity to ensure that food businesses have access to relevant guidance and support to help them get it right from the start and to protect consumers.”

Cllr Peter Feacey, portfolio holder for Community Safety and Wellbeing said: “We have seen a huge increase in people selling food from their homes over the course of the pandemic.

“That’s why we’re working with the FSA to support businesses in the Ashford borough to ensure they are registering and keeping us informed of changes to their businesses.

“Registration is free. If you are already trading and have not registered yet, you need to do so as soon as possible as this is a legal requirement.”

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Article courtesy of the Food Standards Agency