Name: Approved Premises
Description: Approved Premises

Approved Premises

Approved food premises and approval under Regulation (EC) 853/2004

All food businesses must be registered, but certain businesses handling products of animal origin require approval before they start trading.

What are products of animal origin?

  • Meat and poultry - whether fresh, frozen or cooked
  • Mechanically separated/recovered meat
  • Meat products such as pies, sausage rolls, faggots, black pudding and bacon
  • Raw or partially cooked minced meat or meat preparations such as sausages, burgers, marinated raw meat and kebab meat
  • Fish and fish products such as fish fingers, prawns, lobsters, crabs and crayfish - whether dead or alive
  • Live bivalve molluscs
  • Ready meals containing fish or meat
  • Milk and dairy products such as butter, cream, cheese, yoghurt, ice-cream
  • Egg and egg products
  • Frogs legs and snails
  • Rendered animal fats and other animal by products such as gelatine, collagen, stomachs, bladders and intestines
  • Honey and blood

Which premises need to be approved?

All food premises making, preparing or handling food products of animal origin are required to be approved unless they are exempt. If a food business supplies food of animal origin only to the final consumer, ie: the person who eats the food product, then it is exempt from approval.

In addition some businesses may be exempt if they supply products of animal origin to retailers on a marginal, localised and restricted basis.

The question of whether a business is exempt is complicated and will depend on the actual business arrangements. Please contact the Food Safety Team for further advice.

Do approved premises have to meet higher standards?

Establishments that need approval must comply with some additional product specific requirements in EC Regulation 853/2004, as well as with the general hygiene requirements in EC Regulation 852/2004 that apply to all food businesses. In addition to more stringent structural requirements, approved premises must have a detailed food safety management plan to ensure that critical risks are properly controlled.

What should I do if I think my business requires approval?

If you think your food business needs approval please contact us to discuss your query. We will consider the need for approval and advise how your business can best comply with the requirements of the regulations.

Can I start selling food before I receive approval?

No. You should not start any business which requires approval until you have received conditional or full approval for your proposed activity. Operating without the required approval is an offence for which you could be prosecuted.

Do I have to pay for approval?


How do I apply for approval?

If it is determined that your business requires approval an application form will be provided to you which you will need to complete and return to us along with the following information.

  • A detailed scale plan showing the location of rooms and other areas to be used for the storage and processing of raw materials, product and waste, and the layout of facilities and equipment.
  • Details of the food safety management system based on HACCP principles
  • Establishment and equipment maintenance arrangements
  • Establishment, equipment, and transport cleaning arrangements
  • Waste collection and disposal arrangements
  • Water supply
  • Water supply quality testing arrangements
  • Arrangements for product testing
  • Pest control arrangements
  • Monitoring arrangements for staff health
  • Staff hygiene training arrangements
  • Arrangements for record keeping
  • Arrangements for applying the identification mark to product packaging or wrapping

Information that is not received with the application form will still be required before your application can be determined. Applications without sufficient detail may be rejected.

How long will it take to process my application?

When we receive your application we will contact you within 14 working days to confirm its arrival and to let you know if we need any additional information. An on-site inspection of the establishment will be carried out to check that your premises, systems, procedures and documentation meet all of the relevant requirements of EC Regulations 852/2004 and 853/2004.

Once we have assessed your establishment you may be granted either full or conditional approval or your application may be refused. If all legal requirements are met you will be granted full approval. We will issue your establishment with a unique approval number which must be applied to your products and documentation.

Who can advise me on labelling requirements?

To ensure that you are complying with food labelling requirements you may wish to contact Kent County Council Trading Standards.

For further advise use our Contact the E.H Support Team or call 01322 343434

Further information

Approved premises advice from the Food Standards Agency
EC Regulation 852/2004
EC Regulation 853/2004

Last Updated: 06th February 2019 Print Link