Environmental Health advice for businesses

Advice for businesses reopening from 12 April 2021

We have produced guidance for businesses on how they can reopen safely from 12 April 2021, including a template risk assessment to help businesses manage any potential Covid-19 risk in their workplaces.

As there are more people at home and many services are being provided in a different way, we've also provided some guidance and safety information about paper, water and the preparation and delivery of food during the pandemic.

Environmental Health and Licensing officers are not carrying out site visits, but they are available by phone and e-mail to answer enquiries and give advice.

Before reopening and serving customers outside at your premises, hospitality businesses like pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants which have outdoor seating will need to introduce the following safety measures:

  • You will only be able to serve customers outside through table service only (for ordering, consumption and payment for food and drink). If you decide to erect a temporary structure to increase outdoor seating during wet weather, at least 50% of the structure must be open to the air.
  • A maximum of two households or up to six people from different households are allowed to meet in outdoor hospitality venues.
  • Social distancing requirements of two metres or one metre with mitigation between tables will apply.
  • Customers must wear a face covering, unless exempt, when passing through permitted indoor areas, like toilets.
  • You will be required to record details of customers aged 16 or over for NHS Track and Trace, either manually or by using the NHS QR poster. It is recommended to display a number of NHS Track and Trace posters in your premises, so they are easily accessible for customers.
  • You must carry out a Covid-19 risk assessment, setting out the steps you’re taking to protect your employees and others from Covid-19 and how you will manage that risk. Guidance on producing your own risk assessment is available on the Health and Safety Executive’s website and we have produced our own template risk assessment which you might find useful.

Hospitality businesses should also note, from 12 April:

  • There will be no restrictions on opening hours and the sale of alcohol (other than specific planning or licensing restrictions which may apply to your business).
  • Customers will not be required to purchase a substantial meal with a drink.
  • We recommend letting your customers know about any capacity restrictions or changes to how you operate.
  • The Food Standards Agency has produced guidance to help you open your business safely during the current pandemic. and government guidance on operating outside play areas safely is also available.

Further advice on working safely in hospitality venues is available online.

Outside play areas

If your business has an outside play area, you must follow the government guidance.

Planning to increase or introduce your outside seating?

If you decide to introduce or increase your existing outside seating, you’ll need to apply for a Pavement Licence.

Do you have any questions?

If you require any further advice or guidance on food safety, licensing, health and safety or Covid-19 restrictions, please e-mail eh@tandridge.gov.uk 

This guidance sets out the requirements food businesses offering click & collect, delivery and takeaway services must follow to minimise the spread of Covid-19.

Covid-19 legal requirements

Employers must have a Covid-19 risk assessment in place, setting out the steps you’re taking to protect your employees and others from Covid-19 and how you will manage that risk. You can develop your own, or use our template risk assessment.

Your risk assessment must identify:

  • Any areas of your business where there could be a risk of transmission of Covid-19.
  • The likelihood of exposure to Covid-19 when in contact with your business, including any individuals at risk.
  • How you will manage, control and reduce any risk.

Your risk assessment should also consider how social distancing measures, hand hygiene, surface cleaning controls, barriers and face coverings can help you manage any risk at your premises. If you have fewer than five employees, you do not have to write anything down, but it might help if you do.

Face coverings

  • Customers must wear a face covering when visiting your premises. This is a legal requirement for customers, unless exempt.
  • You must display a notice explaining customers must wear a face covering on your premises, unless exempt.

Other recommended Covid-secure measures to consider

We recommend your business also:

  • Has a telephone, e-mail and internet ordering service to limit public access to your premises.
  • Offers a delivery or click & collect service, with a designated collection time to avoid people gathering at your premises.
  • Uses contactless methods of payment, if possible.
  • Sanitises shared delivery vehicles between drivers, ensuring deliver drivers are able to clean their hands between deliveries.

More guidance for people working in restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaway services is also available online or by e-mailing eh@tandridge.gov.uk.

Before reopening, retail businesses will need to introduce the following safety measures:

  • You must carry out a Covid-19 risk assessment, setting out the steps you’re taking to protect your employees and others from Covid-19 and how you will manage that risk. Guidance on producing your own risk assessment is available on the Health and Safety Executive’s website and we have produced our own template risk assessment which you might find useful.
  • Customers and staff are legally required to wear face coverings in indoor spaces, unless exempt.
  • Businesses must provide staff with appropriate PPE, including gloves and face coverings.
  • Businesses must limit the number of customers in your premises to allow for social distancing, including by having a system at the door to monitor the number of customers entering and exiting your premises.
  • Floor markers will indicate and encourage customers to queue in a socially distanced manner at the tills and outside the shop.
  • Use signage to promote the use of face coverings, social distancing and highlight the symptoms of Covid-19 to customers.
  • Have hand sanitiser available at various points throughout your premises. 
  • Put screens at till points to protect staff. 
  • Encourage contactless payment and regularly clean customer touchpoints, like card machines and surfaces.
  • Keep fitting rooms closed.
  • Stagger staff breaks and encourage social distancing in staff break areas.
  • Train staff on the isolation process if they begin showing symptoms or test positive for Covid-19.
  • Be aware of the risk of legionella in water systems which have been off for a substantial amount of time.

Further advice on working safely in shops and branches is available online or by e-mailing eh@tandridge.gov.uk.

This guidance sets out the requirements retailers of essential goods must follow to minimise the spread of Covid-19 in your premises. 

Covid-19 legal requirements

Employers must have a Covid-19 risk assessment in place, setting out the steps you’re taking to protect your employees and others from Covid-19 and how you will manage that risk. You can develop your own or use our template risk assessment.

Your risk assessment must identify:

  • Any areas of your business where there could be a risk of transmission of Covid-19.
  • The likelihood of exposure to Covid-19 when in contact with your business, including any individuals at risk.
  • How you will manage, control and reduce any risk.

Your risk assessment should also consider how social distancing measures, hand hygiene, surface cleaning controls, barriers and face coverings can help you manage any risk at your premises. If you have fewer than five employees, you do not have to write anything down, but it might help if you do.

Face coverings

You should take reasonable steps to ensure customers wear a face covering when visiting your premises, unless exempt. You should display signs, advising face coverings must be worn. Examples of signage are available for free online.

Other recommended Covid-secure measures to consider

We recommend your business also:

  • Introduces social distancing measures, like floor markings, situated two metres apart, to guide customers where they should stand.
  • Implements a one-way system to safely guide customers in and out of your premises, so they can maintain social distancing.
  • Calculates the maximum number of customers you can safely permit on your premises, so social distancing can be maintained. This may mean only one customer is allowed at a time inside smaller premises. Signage at the entrance can let customers know.
  • Assigns the same members of staff to dedicated shift ‘bubbles’ to prevent unnecessary mixing between staff.
  • Implements a Covid-secure system of work for staff on the shop floor so they can socially distance while at their work stations.
  • Controls any queues at the entrance to your premises, where social distancing must also be effectively managed.

More guidance for people working in shops and branches is also available online or by e-mailing eh@tandridge.gov.uk.

Before reopening, close contact or personal care services, including hairdressers, beauty salons and tattooists will need to introduce the following safety measures:

  • You must carry out a Covid-19 risk assessment, setting out the steps you’re taking to protect your employees and others from Covid-19 and how you will manage that risk. Guidance on producing your own risk assessment is available on the Health and Safety Executive’s website and we have produced our own template risk assessment which you might find useful.
  • Ensure all surfaces are thoroughly cleaned, especially those being touched a lot and ask your staff and customers to use hand sanitiser and wash their hands frequently.
  • A Type II face covering and a visor or goggles must be worn when carrying out treatments. If any staff have a genuine exemption from wearing face coverings, note this in your risk assessment.
  • Make sure all staff and customers are maintaining social distancing, including by putting up signs or introducing a one way system in your premises.
  • Increase ventilation, by opening windows and doors and using fans.
  • Display an official NHS QR code poster to collect your customer contact details. If a customer does not have access to the NHS Covid-19 app, you must make a manual record of their contact details instead.
  • Turn people with coronavirus symptoms away. If a staff member (or someone in their household) or a customer has a persistent cough, a high temperature or has lost their sense of taste or smell, they should be isolating. Anyone with Covid-19 symptoms or self-isolating should not come to work. 

Employers should also:

  • Train staff on how to correctly and safely wear a Type II face covering and visor or goggles.
  • Keep clients apart. Consider how many people can safely be in your premises while remaining socially distant. Rearrange waiting areas so clients can socially distance and use floor markings to manage queues.
  • Help your staff maintain social distancing by considering using barriers between workstations, introduce back-to-back or side-to-side working and have staff work in the same team each day to reduce chances of cross infection.
  • Keep music and other background noise to a minimum to prevent people from speaking loudly or shouting.

Do you have any questions?

If you require any further advice or guidance on Covid-19 restrictions, please e-mail eh@tandridge.gov.uk.

With Covid-19 restrictions continuing to ease under the government’s roadmap, we are providing guidance for organisers of small and medium scale events, both indoors and outdoors.

Outdoor gatherings or events

Outdoor gatherings or events, organised by a business, charity, public body or similar organisation, can now take place. Event organisers must:

  1. Complete a health and safety risk assessment. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has provided a template risk assessment which you might find useful.
  2. Ensure those attending follow government guidance on social contact, with up to six people or two households currently able to meet outside. Signage should remind people about observing social distancing and one-way systems should be in place.
  3. Regularly clean all contact surfaces, including toilets, ensuring hand sanitiser is readily available.
  4. Follow current hospitality guidance, if you’re offering hospitality services.
  5. Ensure any erected outdoor coverings, like marquees or gazebos have at least 50% of its sides open.
  6. Ensure customers wear face coverings when not seated, unless exempt.
  7. Stagger arrival times to prevent gatherings of people.
  8. Recording customer details for NHS Test and Trace, either manually or by using the NHS QR poster. We understand it will remain mandatory to display the NHS poster. We recommend displaying a number of QR posters around your venue, easily accessible for customer and in a place which doesn’t create gatherings of people.
  9. Refuse entry to anyone, staff or visitors, displaying symptoms of Coronavirus.
  10. Encourage contactless payments.

We will keep businesses informed of current guidance where possible, however, it is your responsibility to regularly check you are complying with the latest government guidance.

Outside Play Areas

If you operate an outside play area, you must follow the government guidance.

Indoor gatherings or events

Indoor gatherings or events, organised by a business, charity, public body or similar organisation, can take place no earlier than 17 May if they follow the government guidance.

It’s important to note the restrictions on attending indoor events are different to outdoor events or gatherings. Attendees of indoor events must not mix beyond the social contact limits, in a group of six people or two households, or in a group of no more than 30 outdoors.

Do you have the correct licence?

If you have any questions about possible licensing requirements for your proposed event, please contact eh@tandridge.gov.uk.

Event safety management plans and risk assessments

Event organisers must produce an Event Safety Management Plan and Covid-19 risk assessment when planning your event, to show how it will comply with current guidance, making it Covid-secure.

When producing your Event Safety Management Plan, you might find the HSE’s guidance on Managing crowds safely – A guide for organisers at events and venues’ helpful.  The guidance advises basing plans on the ‘Purple Guide’, written by The Events Industry Forum.

Event organisers with no employees do not need to produce an Event Safety Management Plan, associated checklists or health and safety risk assessments. However, you will need to demonstrate how you have reduced the risk of any incidents or accidents occurring.

Other things to consider when planning an event

If your event is being held at a site owned or managed by a third party, you must ensure your Event Safety Management Plan and risk assessments are consistent with those of the site.

Your event’s public liability insurance should reference Covid-19, as under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 2013, employers and/or duty holders are required to report cases of, or deaths from, Covid-19 from occupational exposure, as a result of a person's work.

Temporary demountable structures

If you are planning to use marquees or other temporary demountable structures at your event, you should include this in your event documentation, including your Event Safety Management Plan and risk assessment.

As referenced above, any outdoor structure, including marquees and similar temporary demountable structures, must be at least 50% open to the air. Guidance is available to help you safely erect outdoor structures.

If you plan on having a marquee permanently erected, you’ll need planning permission. When deciding where to place your marquee, please consider neighbours, to minimise any disturbance.  

Surrey County Council Covid-19 checklist for events

Surrey County Council has produced a useful checklist for event organisers, to help you ensure your event is Covid-secure.

Planning future events

Under the government’s roadmap for the easing of lockdown restrictions, from 21 June restrictions on large events should be lifted.

Before committing to future events, particularly those requiring the sale of tickets, event organisers should be aware they are solely liable for all financial and other liabilities incurred arising from the suspension and/or cancellation of your proposed event.

Any questions?

If you have any questions, please contact eh@tandridge.gov.uk.

We wish you success with your event.

Reopening indoor hospitality from 17 May

With Covid-19 restrictions continuing to ease under the government’s roadmap, we are providing guidance to help you reopen safely from 17 May.

We will keep businesses informed of current guidance where possible, however, it is your responsibility to regularly check you are complying with the latest government guidance.

What changes on 17 May?

From 17 May:

  • There will be no restrictions on opening hours or for the sale of alcohol (other than any specific planning or licensing restrictions that may apply to your business).
  • There will be no requirement to purchase a substantial meal with a drink.
  • Customers can only order, consume and pay for food and drink by table service.
  • A maximum number of two households or up to six people from different households will be allowed together.
  • Social distancing requirements will still apply (two metres or a reduction to one metre with mitigation).
  • Customers must wear face coverings when passing through permitted indoor areas, for example when using the toilet and when not seated at their table.
  • You must record customer details for NHS Test and Trace, either manually or by using the NHS QR poster. We understand it will remain mandatory to display the NHS poster. We recommend displaying a number of QR posters around your venue, easily accessible for customers and in a place which doesn’t create gatherings of people.
  • Snooker and pool halls may reopen.
  • Remaining outdoor entertainment events, such as cinemas, theatres and other performance events will also be permitted.

Further advice is available in the government guidance.

Outside play areas

If your business operates an outside play area, you’ll need to follow the government guidance for safely operating a play area.

Preparing for reopening

Before reopening, you should:

  • Review your Covid-safe measures and risk assessment, think about holding refresher training for staff and check you have sufficient signage and queue management systems in place.
  • Assess how many seated customers you can safely accommodate, allowing for  social distancing, queue management, ordering and payment.
  • Make sure you have enough trained staff to manage your customers safely and in accordance with the regulations and guidance.
  • Make sure your customers understand your rules and maximum capacity.
  • Where possible, let customers know about your rules and seating capacity before you open, perhaps through social media, encouraging them to book in advance to avoid people gathering at your premises.
  • Make sure you have systems in place to take orders and payments at the table.
  • Refer to the Food Standards Agency guidance to ensure you can reopen your bar and kitchen safely.  

Are you licensed for outdoor seating?

If you are introducing outdoor dining, or wish to increase your outside seating capacity you must apply for a pavement licence.

Planning future events

Before committing to future events, particularly those requiring the sale of tickets, you should be aware you are solely liable for all financial and other liabilities incurred arising from the suspension and/or cancellation of your proposed event.

Any questions?

If you have any questions, please contact eh@tandridge.gov.uk.

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We have produced a template Covid-19 risk assessment which businesses might find useful when managing potential Covid-19 risks in their workplaces.

Leaflets can be delivered on behalf of local businesses, as long as the person carrying out the delivery sticks to the social distancing guidelines. They should remain at least three steps away (2 metres) from others and wear the recommended personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves and maintain good personal hygiene.

Although there is no evidence to suggest you can catch coronavirus from paper, when you get any post we would advise you to open it, read it and recycle it unless you need to keep it, Wash your hands afterwards.

With more people at home we all need to be aware of the risk of Legionella in vacant properties and workplaces which have become less occupied and where water is allowed to may stagnate in water systems.

Taps or other outlets on hot and cold water systems should be used at least once a week to maintain a degree of water flow and to minimise the chances of stagnation.

To manage the risks during non-occupancy, consideration should be given to implementing a suitable flushing regime or other measures, such as draining the system if it is to remain vacant for long periods, Public Health England has some guidance.

You need to make sure there is a good turnover of water, adequate monitoring of control parameters ie temperature/or biocide levels and inspected for cleanliness also the regular flushing of dead legs, infrequently used outlets and areas of the system where there is poor circulation.

You also need to assess the risk of legionella control across all water provision to ensure water quality is maintained and review risk assessments. If you cannot maintain the current control regime you need to consider emergency shutdown procedures.

In addition, you need to consider other water systems no longer in use, such as evaporative cooling towers, leisure, sports and swimming and spa pool facilities. More details can be found in the Pool Water Treatment Advisory Group Code of Practice.

Guidance has also been produced by the European Society for Clinical Microbiology and Infectious disease on managing Legionella in building water systems during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Current scientific advice shows it is very unlikely coronavirus can be spread through food, but restaurants, pubs and similar non-essential food businesses are now closed, to achieve the necessary social distancing to delay the spread of coronavirus.

Some community organisations and voluntary groups are providing meals and food packs to the community.

While you do not need a food hygiene certificate to provide food for charity or community groups, you do need to make sure you handle food safely. Food provided for community groups must comply with food law and be safe to eat.

Registration

If you handle, prepare, store and serve food occasionally and on a small scale, you do not need to register as a food business.

If you are providing food on a regular and organised basis, or are setting up a food bank, you may need to register, please contact us for advice. 

Existing food banks should already be registered and have actions in place to minimise the risks to users.

Food hygiene when cooking or donating food

If you are donating or preparing food, you need to make sure those who receive the food know what is in it and how to prepare it, so it doesn't make them ill.

Donating prepacked food products will make sure the foods are properly labelled with instructions such as use-by dates, allergen information and storage guidelines.

If you are preparing meals, the four main things to remember for good hygiene are the 4Cs:

  • Cleaning
  • Cooking
  • Chilling
  • Avoiding cross-contamination

It's very important to store food properly to keep it safe. Storing food in sealed containers and at the correct temperature protects it from harmful bacteria, stops objects falling into it, and avoids cross-contamination with other ingredients.

When you're making food for large numbers of people:

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water.
  • Always wash fresh fruit and vegetables before cooking or consumption.
  • Keep raw and ready-to-eat foods separate.
  • Do not use food past its use-by date.
  • Always follow cooking instructions.
  • Make sure food is properly cooked before you serve it.
  • Ensure food preparation areas are suitably cleaned and sanitised after use and wash any equipment you are using in hot soapy water.
  • Ensure frozen food is safely defrosted in a fridge before you use it.
  • Keep food out of the fridge for the shortest time possible.

Food temperature

Food which needs to be chilled at 8◦c or below, such as sandwiches should be left out of the fridge for the minimum possible time and never for more than four hours.

After this time, any remaining food should be thrown away or put back in the fridge. If you put the food back in the fridge, don't let it stand around at room temperature when you serve it again. It should be eaten as soon as possible.

Allergen guidance when cooking for your community or donating food

You should provide details of the relevant 14 allergens. This will allow people with food allergies to make safe food choices.

As best practice, if you are making or donating foods for a food bank you need to label it appropriately, saying what the item is, the date it was produced and include details of any allergens so anyone with food hypersensitivities can avoid it.

If you know the people you are cooking for, ask about any allergy requirements they may have before preparing their meals.

If you are cooking for a community group, you can provide allergen information by labelling food containers or providing a note for each meal.

Cooking for someone with a food allergy or intolerance can be worrying if you're not used to doing it. You can plan a safe meal by:

  • Asking what they can and can't eat.
  • Making sure you keep allergens separate from other foods to avoid cross-contamination.
  • Double-checking the ingredients lists on prepacked foods for allergen information.
  • Checking the ingredients with the person who provided the food, if it was donated.
  • Avoiding adding toppings or garnishes to dishes which might otherwise appear allergen-free.
  • Cleaning work surfaces and equipment thoroughly to remove traces of anything you might have cooked before.

There are often good substitutes available for ingredients someone may need to avoid. Ask the people with a food allergy for help and suggestions for ingredients.

More allergen information can be found on the Food Standards Agency website.

Foods which need extra care

Some foods are more likely to cause food poisoning than others. These include raw milk, raw shellfish, soft cheeses, pate, foods containing raw egg and cooked sliced meats.

If you plan to serve any of these foods, consult the Foods which need extra care section in our Safer food, better business guidance.

Meal containers

If you want to provide food in containers, it is important to select appropriate food grade packaging. This is packaging intended for multiple use, such as Tupperware or takeaway boxes. This will make sure the transported food is safe and its quality maintained. For example, packaging materials may be required to be liquid repellent to prevent leaks, or to stop paper becoming soaked through.

Without this type of packaging, chemical contaminants or germs could transfer onto the food. Well-fitting lids will also minimise any hygiene or spillage risks.

It is safe to re-use glass and plastic containers, as long as they are free from chips and cracks. Make sure containers are thoroughly cleaned to prevent cross-contamination with germs, allergens and physical contaminants. If they are dishwasher safe, a dishwasher is preferable for cleaning due to the high temperature it reaches. Containers should be washed thoroughly in hot, soapy water if a dishwasher is unavailable.

Delivering meals

All food must be delivered in a way which ensures it does not become unsafe or unfit to eat.

Food that needs refrigerating must be kept cool while being transported. This may need to be packed in an insulated box with a coolant gel or in a cool bag. Equally, food that needs to be kept hot should be packed in an insulated bag.

You should also avoid possible cross-contamination risks in the delivery process. This can be done through packaging meals securely and storing allergen-free meals separately in transit, to avoid contamination through any spillages.

If an allergen-free meal has been requested, it should be clear when delivered which container it is in. You can use stickers or a note on the container to label each meal.

More information about safe delivery

Infection control

Food businesses must ensure food handlers are fit for work and comply with health and safety.

Staff must be given clear instructions about any infection control policy in place and any person affected and/or employed in a food business and/or who is likely to come into contact with food should report the illness or symptoms immediately and if possible their causes, to the business owner.

Maintaining a two metre distance between people must also apply in your kitchen to keep your staff safe. The government has issued guidance on Coronavirus for employees and businesses.

More information on preparing foods for the community.

Some businesses are diversifying to maintain their business. Current scientific advice shows it is very unlikely coronavirus can be spread through food, but government requirements mean restaurants, pubs and similar non-essential food businesses are closed, to achieve the necessary social distancing to delay the spread of coronavirus.

If you are changing how you run your food business, you should think through any new hazards and ensure you have control measures in place to eliminate the risks.

A business can only provide take-away and delivery food services if it is already registered as a food business.

Coronavirus (Covid-19) checklist for businesses

A checklist to support food businesses to reopen safely during COVID-19 after a period of inaction can also be found on Food.gov.uk.

Food safety

Businesses already registered and which want to diversify into these areas do not need to let us know.

Food businesses will need to review their HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point) based Food Safety Management System to ensure the additional hazards, for example, cross contamination, temperature control; transport and delivery associated with these changes in operation, are considered and documented where appropriate.

The Food Safety Management System must be suitable and sufficient, to ensure:

  • Those control points which are critical to food safety have been identified and implemented.
  • Measures to be taken in the event of a failure in control at those critical points are specified and management checks to verify the correct operation of procedures are made and recorded.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has provided advice on this for businesses selling products online, for takeaway or for delivery.

Delivering food

Food should be put into food safe containers for delivery. Consider the time and distance for delivering and try to keep both to a minimum to maintain food quality and safety. Ensuring good temperature control is essential.

For food safety and quality, you will want to ensure hot ready to eat food is delivered piping hot. You will need to consider how to do this. Insulated cool boxes/bags are a good way to keep the heat in food.

It is important to deliver the food as quickly as possible following preparation. Food intended to be eaten cold, must be kept it cold. Use insulated cold storage boxes or similar to keep the temperature between 0 - 5°C.

You should also ensure:

  • Delivery vehicles are fit for purpose and food must not be subjected to potential contamination.
  • The interior of the vehicle is kept clean and food is not transported with animals or chemicals such as fuel, oil and screen wash.
  • The vehicle insurance covers business use.
  • Alcoholic beverages are not delivered - unless you have a licence to do this.
  • Hot food and/or drink are/is not served between the hours of 11pm and 5am, unless you have a licence to do so.

Contact free delivery

Limiting contact when delivering orders will help keep everyone healthy. You should leave deliveries at your customer's door, rather than handing it over to them. The delivery driver should knock on the door, step back at least 2 metres and wait nearby for the customer to collect it.

Take payments over the phone or internet, to avoid handling cash. If this is not possible, ensure your delivery driver has some alcohol gel to clean their hands after handling money.

Allergen management 

Allergen management is also crucial to the safety of your customers, when food is sold at a distance, for example via internet sales, home delivery or ordered in advance as a take-away. Measures must be in place to ensure the relevant allergen information is provided.

Food businesses must provide allergen information about any of the 14 legal allergens when these are used, as ingredients, in the food and/or drink they provide. 

The allergen information must be available to the customer at two stages through the ordering process as follows:

  • Before they order - this can be given verbally or in writing (for example in an online menu).
  • At the point of delivery - if there has been no opportunity to speak to the customer before this will need to be in writing, for example, on stickers on the food packaging.

Additional information on allergens is available on the Food Standards Agency website.

All foods must be provided to consumers in a way, which ensures they do not become unsafe or unfit to eat during the take-away or delivery process. 

Infection control

Food businesses must ensure food handlers are fit for work and comply with health and safety.

Staff must be given clear instructions about any infection control policy in place and any person affected and/or employed in a food business and/or who is likely to come into contact with food should report the illness or symptoms immediately and if possible their causes, to the business owner.

Maintaining a two metre distance between people must also apply in your kitchen to keep your staff safe. The government has issued guidance on Coronavirus for employees and businesses.

Anyone who has been asked to self-isolate can order a takeaway by phone or online. They should tell the delivery driver the items are to be left outside or at another agreed location.

The Working Safely guidance sets out practical steps for businesses in eight guides covering a range of different types of work. Many businesses operate more than one type of workplace, such as an office, factory and fleet of vehicles. You may need to use more than one of these guides as you think through what you need to do to keep employees safe.