Your food business - what you must do by law

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Food businesses in Ipswich need to register all of their premises with the Council before opening or before starting to use new premises. You may be fined, imprisoned for up to two years or both if you run a food business without registering.

For more information on what constitutes a food business and how to register go to Food Business Registration.

Change of ownership

A new owner of an existing business is required to register the new ownership. New owners should ensure their business fully complies with the law – simply carrying on the procedures of the old business cannot guarantee such compliance.

Animal products

If you intend to set up a business that manufactures or handles (for example, slicing and re-wrapping) products of animal origin for sale on to other businesses, your premises may have to be approved instead. It is a legal requirement that approval, if needed, is obtained before starting to trade.


A 'food business operator' is the natural or legal person responsible for ensuring that the requirements of food law are met within the food business under their control.

A food business operator must ensure that their staff are appropriately trained to handle food safely. Although there is no legal requirement to attend a formal training course to satisfy this requirement, many businesses want their staff to do this. Find a course in your area.

Further advice on starting a food business can be found on the Food Standards Agency website.

Contact Details

Food Safety,
Ipswich Borough Council, 
Grafton House, 
15-17 Russell Road,

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01473 432000