Essential Licenses For Starting a Catering Business

Catering Bussiness

The first step in starting a catering business is to obtain a license. This will ensure that you are legally allowed to conduct your catering business. Every business has to get a license before starting their business, even a  food truck business. 

This is to ensure that your catering establishment operates according to local authority and monitors food hygiene for public health. 

They are categorised into specific types of businesses to serve the needs of each industry better. Each license has different requirements that every business owner must follow to stay on the right side of the law and avoid fines.

What is a Catering Business?

A catering business is a type of business that provides food and drink for various events. They are usually small and have few employees. They provide services to private parties, restaurants, hotels, schools, or other venues that need food.

A catering business can be a small business as simple as buying food from grocery stores and reselling it to customers, or it can be much more complex. The Catering industry has provided services such as baking, grilling, cooking, preparing food and serving drinks at events such as weddings or parties.

Permits For Starting a Catering Business

Obtaining a permit is complicated and time-consuming. It involves filling out forms, waiting for responses, and paying fees. To start a catering company without the hassle of obtaining a permit, one must have an understanding of the process. 

To simplify the process for you, we have compiled this list of licenses that can help guide you through the process:

License For Catering Bussiness

General Business License

A general business license is a permit issued by the government to operate a business in a particular area. The license is required to be renewed every three years. This license is required for any business, whether a restaurant or an event planner.

Catering License

A catering license is a document that certifies that the person applying for the license is authorised to operate a catering business in the jurisdiction. It contains all of the details about the applicant and their business.

"Doing Business As" License (DBA)

A catering business “Doing Business As” license is a legal document that allows a person or company to conduct business under a different name than their own. A DBA license is typically used by companies that need to change their name but are not ready for a new one, such as in the case of a merger or acquisition.

To get a DBA license, you must first register with the Secretary of State. The process can take up to six months and requires filling out paperwork, submitting documents and paying fees. Once your application is approved, you will receive your DBA license for £100.

Caterer's Permit

The caterer permit is a new law that allows restaurants, cafes, and other food establishments that sell food on the premises to serve the public. It also allows these establishments to serve alcohol. Applying for your caterer permit begins with completing an application for Business License following state law. You will then need to submit required documentation such as proof of insurance, copies of any contracts between you and any employees or subcontractors who work on your behalf, copies of any permits issued by local authorities related to your business operations (such as zoning permits), proof of payment in full for all applicable taxes during the previous year, and more.

Building Health Permit

The Building health permit is a document required for any person who wants to work in the construction industry. This includes those who are working in the offices within the building and those who are working in construction companies.

Catering Business owners need to know how to get a building health permit from the government before starting their catering business. To obtain this permit, they must meet specific requirements, such as having appropriate premises and ensuring that food safety standards are met.

Food Handler Permit

If you are starting a food business, then you need to get a food handler permit first before you can serve food to the public.

The first step is to submit an application for your Food Handler Permit application. The fee for a permit is £150, but if you are an individual who will work less than six hours per day, then you can pay the fee in monthly instalments of £30 instead. For example, if your application is approved and you start working on March 1st, then you will have to pay £150 upfront plus £30 per month for three months. Once these steps are completed, your application will be reviewed by the food standards agency before getting approved.


  • If you are starting a catering business, it is important to have the right or required permits in place.
  • Make sure to speak with your local municipality to find out what permits are necessary for your business.
  • Be sure to keep track of any updates to your permits so you can always comply.
  • There are also health and safety regulations that must be followed, such as ensuring that food is correctly stored and handled.
  • It is essential to make sure all staff have the required certification; by having these, you can start your catering business with confidence.


Can I operate a catering business without having complete permits?

This is a question that many people ask themselves before they start their catering business. The answer is no. You will have all the permits before legally operating a catering business in your city. To get the permits, you prove that you have the financial resources and management skills necessary for running a successful catering business. If you cannot prove these things, it is not worth it for you to start your own catering business.

Is it arduous to get catering business permits?

The process of getting a catering business permit is not easy. It can be arduous and time-consuming. You must complete several forms and submit them to the proper authorities. You may also need to provide proof that you have the required amount of money to start your business.

Is getting catering permits expensive?

The costs of obtaining a catering permit vary depending on the event and the location. However, it is not always easy to get this permit. Sometimes, you may need to pay a fee before being granted a permit. In other cases, there may be an application fee that you need to pay.