If you are hoping to start up a new food business it is essential that you get things right from the start.

It may not be possible to provide guidance and support to all new business establishments. However, the following information and links will hopefully be helpful to you:

Starting a new food business guidance
  1. Table of contents

Food Safety Advice

You will find the following websites helpful for gaining further advice on food safety matters and how to comply with food safety legislation.

Workplace Safety Advice

As a business and workplace you will also need to ensure you comply with requirements of health and safety legislation to ensure employees and anyone visiting your business is kept safe. The following websites will provide helpful information.

Business Support

Colleagues in the Business Gateway team can provide valuable advice, support and even access to finances to get your business up and running. They should be contacted to discuss your proposals and see what help they can offer. You can find more information from Business Gateway.

Licences and other permissions


You will need to consider whether you will need to be licensed for any of the activities you carry out (eg sale of alcohol, late hours catering, street trader etc).

Alcohol licences

On some occasions you may require a Section 50 Certificate from Environmental Health for your alcohol licence. If so, you must complete and submit an application form with the appropriate fee.

Environmental Health and Trading Standards Section 50 application form

Street trader's licence

If you apply for a street trader's licence you will need a Certificate of Compliance from the Environmental Health section of the Local Authority where your unit is normally based.

If your unit is normally based within Falkirk Council you will need this certificate from our Food & Safety team.

The mobile unit must meet the structural requirements of the Mobile Traders Food Hygiene National Standard before the Certificate can be provided.

Mobile Traders Food Hygiene National Standard and Template
Starting a new food business guidance

Certificate of Compliance requests should be emailed to fs@falkirk.gov.uk.

Planning and Building Standards

You may need planning permission for new premises or change of use, or building warrant approval if carrying out any structural works and alterations.

Registering your new business

All food businesses (other than Approved food establishments) must be registered with their local authority. Information on registering your food business with Falkirk Council can be found on our Register your food business page.

Once we have received your registration form we will include you in our premises database and inspection plan.


In certain circumstances childminders will have to register as a food business. We have a guidance note which will help you decide whether you need to:

Childminders guidance note

If you do need to register you must complete, sign and return the childminders registration form and evaluation forms:

Childminders registration form
Childminders food safety evaluation form

Both forms should be returned to:

Food & Safety
Development Services
Abbotsford House, Davids Loan

Or email your completed forms to fs@falkirk.gov.uk.

In addition, you will find helpful information for childminders from Food Standards Scotland.

Food hygiene training

If you are in charge of a business selling or supplying food, the law requires you to make sure that any member of staff who handles food is supervised and instructed and/or trained in food hygiene in a way appropriate for the work they do.

The person responsible for developing and maintaining your food safety management procedures must have received training to enable them to do this.

There is no legal requirement to attend a formal training course or get a qualification, however a training course may be the easiest way to ensure staff have sufficient knowledge and provide proof of this.

Courses are available from a range of food hygiene training providers. We cannot recommend any particular providers, however Forth Valley College provide this training locally.

The most recognised qualification (Elementary Food Hygiene course) is accredited by REHIS.

Officers from the Food & Safety team provide the Elementary Food Hygiene Course to certain sectors:

  • Falkirk Council employees who require this training for their work - employees should contact their line manager.
  • Food handlers in the voluntary and charitable sector within the Falkirk Council area – more information is available by emailing fs@falkirk.gov.uk.
  • Unemployed residents of Falkirk Council looking to gain work in the food industry - more information is available by emailing fs@falkirk.gov.uk.

We do not provide training to businesses.