Structural and practical issues in setting up your new food business
The premises you use to run your food business may be your home kitchen, a mobile unit or commercial kitchen. Each must satisfy the requirements set out in Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004.
The below list is a general summary to prompt you on what you must do to comply with these regulations. It is not meant as a full interpretation of the law.
You must have access to an adequate number of flush lavatories.
Toilets must not open directly into a food room.
You must have a hand wash basin designated for such use.
Hand soap, hot water and a means of drying hands are required.
Both WC and kitchen must have adequate ventillation (mechanical or natural).
Lighting must be sufficient.
Adequate drainage and means to dispose waste, including oil, safetly.
A seperate area must be available for staff to keep outdoor clothing.
Cleaning chemicals must be stored seperate to food.
Room where food is prepared, treated or processed
Floors and walls must be of impervious material and therefore easy to clean. They must also be kept in good condition.
Ceilings must be constructed and finished to prevent dirt and mould from building up and the shredding of particles.
Windows and doors must be well fitted, easy to clean and where necessary fitted with insect screens.
Surfaces (including equipment) must be maintained in a sound condition and easy to clean and disinfect. This means they must be made of materials that are non absorbant, smooth, and washable.
You must have seperate adequate facilities, where necessary, for washing food and equipment.
Vehicles and/or containers used to transport foods must be kept clean and maintained in good repair and condition.
Equipment must be constructed of appropriate materials as to minimise the risk of contamination and allow effective cleaning and disinfecting, including the surrounding area.
Food waste must be kept in lidded containers and removed from food rooms as quickly as possible. All waste must be disposed of according to EC legislation.
The water supply must be of potable (drinking water) quality.
People working with food must maintain a high level of personal hygiene, wear suitable protective clothing and tell their employer if suffering from illness or symptoms of food poisoning.
Anyone suffering from diarrhoea, whom has infected wounds, skin infection or sores or are suffering from or carrying a disease likely to be transmitted through food must not handle food or enter a food handling area.
You must have adequate, written, food safety procedures in place to control the levels of bacteria in food.
You must not accept raw materials or ingredients if known or reasonably expected to be unfit.
You must store food as to protect it from contamination.
At all stages of production, processing and distribution you must protect food from contamination.
You must have adequate procedures to control pests and pets (where applicable) contaminating food.
Unfit food must be appropriately labelled and stored.
Any wrapping or packing of food must not be a source of contamination.
You must not keep foods at a temperature that might cause a risk to health.
Cold food must be kept at 8 degrees c or below.
Hot food must be kept hot at 63 degrees c or above.
When serving or displaying food it may (if necessary) be kept out of temperature control for a single limited time of 4 hours for cold food and two hours for hot food.
Defrosting must be undertaken in a way that minimises the risk of harmful bacteria growing.
Staff must be adequately supervised, instrcuted and / or trained in food safety appropriate to their duties.
The person or peole responsible for developing or maintaining the food safety management system must be adequately trained to do this.
Movable and temporary premises
Premises and vending machines are, so far as is reasonably practicable, to be so sited, designed, constructed and kept clean and maintained in good repair and condition as to avoid the risk of contamination, in particular by animals and pests.
In particular, where necessary:
Appropriate facilities are to be available to maintain adequate personal hygiene
Surfaces in contact with food are to be in a sound condition and be easy to clean and, where necessary, to disinfect.
Adequate provision is to be made for the cleaning and, where necessary, disinfecting of working utensils and equipment;
Where foodstuffs are cleaned as part of the food business’ operations, adequate provision is to be made for this to be undertaken hygienically;
An adequate supply of hot and/or cold potable water is to be available;
Adequate arrangements and/or facilities for the hygienic storage and disposal of waste;
Adequate facilities and/or arrangements for maintaining and monitoring suitable food temperature conditions are to be available;
- Foodstuffs are to be so placed as to avoid the risk of contamination.
Use the above as a checklist to ensure you have addressed each of the requirements.
A full copy of the regulation the checklist is based upon can be found here.