Covid-19 advice for food businesses

You are required by law to risk assess your business activity to keep people safe and prevent the spread of coronavirus. The below control points must be in place along with any others your risk assessment identifies as necessary in line with current guidance.

Summary of controls you need to consider include:

  • Self-isolation of any staff with symptoms or if they test positive.
  • Consider introducing workplace testing
  • Maintaining social distancing between staff wherever possible..
  • Social distancing between different groups.
  • Increasing the frequency of hand washing and surface cleaning.
  • Ventilation within indoor areas.
  • Encouraging contactless payments.
  • Use of face coverings or other mitigating control measures by staff and customers
  • Providing hand sanitiser at entry points, toilet facilities and other appropriate points.
  • Use of one-way systems where possible

Home Delivery Advice

Tendring District Council understand that businesses may look to change their business model and diversify in order to maintain their business . We also appreciate voluntary groups may also want to assist with delivery of meals and these groups must ensure the food they deliver is safe.

Please visit the Food Standards Agency (FSA) website for more advice or contact the Food Safety Team at the council.

The following advice is for those businesses that are looking to make provision for takeaways and deliveries where they have not done so before.

A business will only be in a position do this if they are registered as a food business with a Local Authority.

All foods must be delivered to consumers in a way that ensures that they do not become unsafe or unfit to eat.

Foods that need refrigerating must be kept cool (below 8 degrees C) while they are being transported. This may need to be packed in an insulated box with a coolant gel or in a cool bag.

If you are transporting hot food, it should be kept hot (above 63 degrees C). This may need to be packed in an insulated box. It is recommended to keep distances short and times limited to within 30 minutes.

The FSA has provided advice for business: ‘How to manage a food business if you sell products online, for takeaway or for delivery.’

Allergens – There is a wealth of advice for businesses on allergen management on the FSA website. When an order is placed always check if any one has dietary requirements.

Infection Control

You have responsibilities to ensure food handlers are fit for work under the food hygiene regulations and in addition you have a general duty to ensure the Health, Safety and Welfare of persons in your employment and members of the public.

Relevant staff must be provided with clear instructions on any infection control policy in place, and any person so affected and employed in a food business and who is likely to come into contact with food is to report immediately the illness or symptoms, and if possible their causes, to the food business operator. 

The Government have issued guidance on COVID-19 for employees and businesses https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19

This includes advice that ‘if you have been asked to self-isolate, you can order by phone or online, such as through takeaway services or online shopping deliveries.  However, make sure you tell the delivery driver that the items are to be left outside, or as appropriate for your home’.

If you are undertaking deliveries, then you should have a system in place to ascertain/develop a system whereby clients can notify you if they are self-isolating so that action can be taken accordingly.

Other useful information

Download government advice regarding business retention of customer details and Test and Trace

Advice for public houses and restaurants reopening from 4 July

Advice for hotels and guest accommodation reopening from 4 July

Last updated on: 25/11/2021 - 15:03