Supporting our local businesses
Pages in Supporting our local businesses
5. Guidance for food businesses
The Government has published guidance for food businesses on coronavirus.
As of Monday 19 July 2021, we in Step 4 of the Government's roadmap out of lockdown.
From Step 4, social distancing is no longer legally required and there are no limits on social contact between people from different households, including in hospitality settings. However, your risk assessment should still consider how you will manage the risks from Covid-19 infection, and you should follow the principles set out in the Working Safely guidance.
Outdoor Seating Areas
If you wish to place furniture such as tables and chairs on the pavement outside your premises, you will need to apply for a Pavement Licence.
Some venues may wish to erect outdoor shelters. Although the arrangement of these is no longer controlled by law relating to Covid-19 restrictions, if you want people to be allowed to smoke in them, they must be compliant with Smoke-free legislation. This requires that shelters, marquees, and other structures can have a roof but need to have at least 50% of the area of their walls open at all times whilst in use.
In practice, this means your outside shelter must not have sides, including doors, windows or other fittings that can be opened or shut, that enclose more than 50% of the shelter.
- If there are other structures that serve the purpose of walls and constitute the perimeter of the premises, these will be counted as ‘walls’ e.g. a boundary fence which is close to the shelter.
If you are unsure if your shelter will comply, please contact the Environmental Health team for guidance.
If your structure is bigger than the Permitted Development Rights or is located in a Conservation Area or with a Listed building, it may require Planning Consent and you will need to contact the Planning Team for advice. You can call the Duty Planning Line on 01737 276000 between the hours of 10am – 11:30 to speak to a Planning Officer if you need to check.
Small detached buildings will not normally require building regulations if the floor area of the building is less than 15m2.
If the floor area is between 15-30m2 you will not normally require building regulations providing that the building is either at least 1m from the boundary or it is constructed of substantially non-combustible material. It is the businesses responsibility to check if this will apply – seeour building control partner, Southern BCP, if you are not sure.
- Restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaway services: Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19)
- HSE - Make your workplace safe - Working safely during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak - Risk Assessment
- FSA - Food safety and hygiene guidance for all food businesses to operate safely during COVID-19. This guidance is for; Restaurants and takeaways, Food manufacturers, Farming and agriculture
- Create a coronavirus NHS QR code for your restaurant, café or venue - Hospitality venues are encouraged to display an official NHS QR code poster. Although it’s not legally required to do so, it will enable individuals to check in using the NHS COVID-19 app and support NHS Test and Trace to contact those who may have been exposed to COVID-19 so that they can book a test. You should also have a system in place to record contact details for those who do not have the app.
Food safety advice if providing food from home
If you are selling food you have prepared from your home, you must be registered with Reigate & Banstead Borough Council as a food business.
If you are offering to prepare and deliver any form of cooked or prepared food from your home for the community, then there are a number of additional things you need to consider, to ensure that the food you are preparing and delivering is safe to eat:
- The ingredients are within their expiry dates and are not at risk of causing a bacterial infection
- Foods that need refrigerating must be kept cool (ideally below 8°C) while being transported using a cool bag/insulated box
- Cook foods to above 75°C to kill off food poisoning bacteria
- Hot foods should be kept ideally above 63°C and may also need to be packed in an insulated box
- Travel times should be limited to less than 30 minutes.
The Food Standards Agency has published some further hygiene and allergy advice for individuals cooking for the community.
This is also relevant if you're planning to cook for your neighbours. However, we recommend that if you'd like to help others by providing food, that you contact Voluntary Action Reigate & Banstead (VARB) who is coordinating the volunteering efforts for the borough.
If you do want to provide food from your own home, please call the Environmental Health team on 01737 276 417 or email [email protected] to get advice and support to ensure you are doing so safely.