Last night I spent a long time reading through page after page of information, sent to me from my local council, regarding how to legally trade as a baking business from home. It turns out I should have known how many things I would have to do, like so many other things in my life, it boils down to three things.
It is a requirement of the Food Safety Act 1990 that, with few exceptions, all food businesses have to register with the Local Authority. New businesses have to register at least 28 days before operation. Registration is free. As I will be using dairy products within my baking I will have to have an inspection of my kitchen to make sure I am carrying out my Food Safety Management System (explained in step 3).
2) Food Hygiene Training
It is vital to the safe operation of any business that staff know how to work as safely as possible. Under the Food Hygiene Regulations staff must be supervised and trained and/or instructed sufficiently to work safely. Under Health and Safety legislation it is a requirement that staff are trained appropriately so that they work as safely as possible without risk to themselves, colleagues or others.
Training can be obtained from a variety of suppliers including local collages and online but it must be a minimum of level 2 training in order to trade.
3) Food Safety Management System (FSMS)
Effective hygiene management is the key to preventing food poisoning from your business and ensuring that the food you prepare and serve is safe to eat. The law requires the proprietor of a food business to carry out a hazard analysis and write this as your Food Safety Management System. It is not as complicated as it sounds and does not involve great expense. Your local council may be able to provide you with a general starter pack including notes on how to draw up your own FSMS.
Right now I am filling out forms to register with my council, finding a course to complete in Food Hygiene and starting to write my FSMS, no doubt this is going to take me a few days so I will keep you updated in my progress along the way. Much like the three phases of a woman’s life (maiden, mother crone) and the saying that ‘what you put out comes back to you three times in return’ (yes good and bad). Both beliefs of which I already have permanently represented in my own tattoo on my wrist in the form of the Celtic Triquetra and Triskele. I am once again happily reading page after page of forms absorbing as much information as I can of the three things I need to complete in order to continue on my quest.
Just a side note, does anyone else really like the word ‘quest‘, every time I use it I feel like I am entering a children’s novel, like the Famous Five or Nancy Drew, collecting clues, registration forms in my case, along the way to get to the treasure, my very own baking business. Hey Ho, for the time being I hope you enjoy my Blackberry Tart recipe.