Food Premises Approval

If a business makes, prepares or handles food of animal origin (e.g. meat, fish or dairy) for supply to other businesses, then that food business and its activities in most circumstances will require what is known as 'approval'.

Food premises that require approval must meet additional requirements above those food premises which do not, as they usually involve more high risk operations. If your food premise requires approval, you will need to meet the hygiene standards set out in the following regulations:

  • Regulation (EC) No 852/2004 Hygiene of foodstuffs
  • Regulation (EC) No 853/2004 Hygiene rules for food of animal origin

If any part of your business requires approval, you will not be able to operate this part of your process until you have received confirmation of your approval or conditional approval for a certain period of time.

Exemptions from the approval process

If there is an element of retail involved in your business and you intend to supply any other retailers or caterers, you may be exempt from approval if the supply of the food of animal origin is marginalised, localised and restricted:

  • Marginal: a small part of the establishment's business, meaning up to one quarter of the business in terms of food
  • Localised: sale within the supplying establishment's own county, plus the greater of either the neighbouring county/counties or 30 miles from the boundary of the supplying establishment's county
  • Restricted: concerning only certain types of products being made or establishments being supplied

Should your food business be exempt from the approval process, you will still need to register your food business with Mole Valley District Council by filling in a Food Business Registration Form through GOV.UK or email For guidance, please call 01306 879301.

More information can be found on Food Registration, including applying for approval.

Applying for approval

To apply for approval online, please complete the electronic form through GOV.UK or email For guidance, please call 01306 879301.

Once your application has been received, you will be visited at your premises and any work you need to do in order to comply with the regulations discussed. If your business has achieved the required standards, approval will be granted and you will be issued with a unique approval number, which makes up part of the identification mark that you will need to apply to your products.

If you are unsure whether your intended business activity will require approval, please email