Rother District Council understands that food businesses may change their business model in order to maintain their business during the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak.

We have created a public register of food businesses that have already informed us that they are offering takeaway or delivery services and wish to have their details published. Please visit our Food Businesses Operating During Coronavirus Restrictions page for more information.

This page offers advice for food businesses that wish to offer takeaways, deliveries and collections where they have not done so before.


Food takeaways must be registered with Rother District council; if you are not registered please do so by following the instructions on the page below.

Planning Permission

The Government has announced a relaxation of planning rules. For the next twelve months pubs and restaurants will be able to operate as takeaways providing hot food and drink. If you wish to do this you must inform our planning team by emailing the name of your premises, full address, your contact details, the date you intend/started offering

Further information on the relaxation of planning laws can be found at GOV.UK – Pubs and Restaurants to operate as Takeaways

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) have provided food hygiene advice for business on mail order and distance selling of food at FSA Distance Selling (Mail Order and Delivery)

Food Standards Agency general guidance for food businesses during the ongoing coronavirus outbreak is at GOV.UK – Guidance for Food Businesses

Safe Preparation and Delivery

All foods must be delivered to consumers in a way that ensures that they do not become unsafe or unfit to eat. Scientific advice is that it is very unlikely that COVID-19 can be spread through food, but if you are changing how you operate then you should think through the risks and make sure you have suitable control measures in place. Update the food safety management system (SFBB) to include these changes, transport and delivery of food to customers. All staff must be made aware of these changes. Details of SFBB are at Safer Foods Better Businesses

Foods that need refrigerating must be kept at 8ºC or below while they are being transported. Food may need to be packed in an insulated box/bag with a coolant gel or packs. When transporting hot food, it should be kept above 63ºC, in an insulated box. It is recommended to keep distances short and times limited to within 30 minutes.

Packaging of Food

The containers used to put food in must be ‘food safe’ (if plastic they should have a logo, on them). Store safely in their original packaging, removing only what is needed. When placed in kitchen, store in such a way to prevent contamination (e.g. in a separate, clean area such as higher shelf and upside down). When placing food inside, always use clean utensils and ensure good personal hygiene, especially hand washing, before touching containers, closing lids and placing them in delivery bags. The insulated containers used to transport the food must be kept clean and sanitised before use.


Allergen information needs to be available at the point of order and when the food is delivered. Ensure you provide accurate information regarding listed allergens in the food you sell, prepare such food safely, then label and keep it separate until delivered. For further information check the FSA website and the following page from the Anaphylaxis Campaign

Contact-Free Delivery

Limiting contact when delivering orders or when customers collect orders is vital to keep everyone healthy. Leave deliveries at the door of your customer or another agreed point. Take payments over the phone or internet rather than taking a cash payment. Ensure your driver has alcohol gel to clean their hands regularly.

Infection Control

You have legal responsibilities to ensure food handlers are fit for work and a general duty to ensure the Health, Safety and Welfare of persons in your employment and members of the public. Food handlers must report any infectious disease, symptoms to their manager. The Government have issued practical guidance on COVID-19 for employees and businesses to follow: GOV.UK – Guidance to Employers and Businesses about COVID-19It advises those individuals that are self isolating at home that when ordering items to be delivered (including food) that they ‘make sure to tell the delivery driver that the items are to be left outside, or as appropriate for your home’. This information should be noted at the time of ordering.


Advise customers of the time and point of collection by phone/email/text. The customer waiting area must be controlled so all customers observe the 2m social distancing – for example, by marking out 2m boxes on the floor. Do not allow customers to gather or loiter. Regularly wash and disinfect all hand contact points.