honey and food standards agency

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hedgerow pete

Queen Bee
Jan 26, 2009
Reaction score
UK, Birmingham, Sandwell. Pork scratching Bandit c
Hive Type
does anyone know where i can find all about ( in plan english) about the food standards. i want to start to sell my honey at a couple of farmers markets and i also want to start to bottle and correctly label and every thing i have been doing wrong all these years, what impliments are exceptable what levels of hygene is the house kitchen suitable anymore. can you actualy hire a commercial kitchen for the day to take my honey to. are there mobile honey proccessors, what is the minium standards. do you have too wear the silly net hats in your own home,

what are the standards and how do small keepers meet them
Producing a food for sale item in your own kitchen the minimum requirements are, a seperate wash hand basin and your washing machine (clothes) to be housed elsewhere. No obvious animals either, so get rid of the cat litter tray in the corner.

Honey would be classed as low risk so not much else would be required if you were fairly small scale. The best thing I would advise you to do is contact your local trading standards and get a home visit/assessment, they actually want to help you and if you do it properly from the start you will find they are quite pleasant people.

You will need a good accurate set of scales which have a tare function and stamped by trading standards so don't pick up a set at Wilkos

Labels need to be accurate. Describing the contents - easy enough with honey, stated weight and your address, and probably these days a best/use by date. I don't know what that would be with honey, I used to produce preserves for sale and I gave them 6 months although they would be good for a lot longer than that.

Protective clothing (including hats) protect the product from you and you from the product. Seeing one of your hairs floating in a jar of honey may encourage you to wear a silly hat :)

It is as illegal to sell an over weight jar than it is to sell an under weight jar.

A set of stamped test weights to prove accuracy of your precious scales. A record of testing scales too. Then you can prove intent to comply.

Everything should be food grade. Ie stainless or food grade plastic.

I just ploughed through the BBKA peice on labeling and it is pretty bloody unhelpful. I have bottled tons and sold it all with suitable labels and I cannot understand that file at all. Sheesh.

Keep your lots small if you are small. Say 50 jars. If you are small sell in half pounds or 224 gms. (higher profit too)

Put your lot number and best before on your security tag. Rubber stamp is fine or get tags you can computer print.

Honey is indeed classed as low risk so be sensible and do it right to do you and your product proud.

Oh yes and............. CHARGE a decent price for it too. Not a penny a pound please.... have some pride.

There is a write up on this in beecraft over the next few magazines there are so many different things to think about:confused:
i likes poly hive idea of smaller jars i have aways used one pounders and have charged £5 each. but i have alway sold them to a friend and he is giving up this year, so i will be looking for a new market . i might try to see if i can shift some to another health food shop, but i like the idea of farmers markets and selling to over paid townie idiots. you know the one i mean maybe i should charge evan more to these people. but my main concerns is the food hygene and its set up
have you considered other local events, school fetes, christmas bazaars etc.? I always do well at this sort of thing. The trouble with any shop or farmers market is continuity of supply. People don't like to be let down. And farmers markets don't want 2 honey stalls either. (Oh and farmers markets will charge you a small fortune for a stall too).
Producing a food for sale item in your own kitchen the minimum requirements are, a seperate wash hand basin and your washing machine (clothes) to be housed elsewhere.

The washing machine can be in the kitchen as mine is, and I had a visit from Environmental health 2 weeks ago.
The following is a link to the official honey regulations, a very lengthy doc, they deal with the labelling, descriptors etc which as producers we need to abide by.
I shall read it from cover to cover when the football is on.
The guidelines on the BBKA site summarise the above.

There are other documents that deal with food hygiene regulations.

If your honey looks good and is labelled professionally it will always command a good price. I have seen some in 'local shops' that looks really awful, I do wonder if the customer ever comes back for more.

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