Search Our Site

We have 3,451,575 registered online learners.
402 new learners so far today.

What food hygiene certificate do I need to sell cakes from home?

schedule 11th September 2017 by Ben Piper in Food and Drink

Cupcakes getting iced

If you’ve got a flair for baking you might decide to set up your own food business and sell cakes and other treats from home. But do you need a food hygiene certificate first?

On a whole, the UK has a sweet tooth. We love cakes, treats, sweets and anything with a little bit of sugar in - which means there will always be a demand for delicious desserts. If you’ve got a flair for baking, enjoying throwing together recipes and whipping up tasty treats, then you may have considered making a profit out of it.

Along with the ‘foodie’ culture, independent food businesses across the UK have surged in the past couple of years. Insurance firm Simply Business revealed that there are now a quarter more independent food businesses than there were a year ago, with bakeries and fishmongers the most popular new enterprises.

However, even if you just want to start selling cakes from the comfort of your own home, there are a few things you must do to accredit your business and let your customers know that the food you are selling is safe.

How do I register my business?

Before selling cakes or any type of food, you must be in contact with your local authority. They will tell you whether or not you need to register your business or if you need to apply for approval.

They will also help you plan your business and provide you with the appropriate training and tools if required. If the local authority tells you to register your business you must do so with the environmental health service at least 28 days before opening. There is no charge to do this.

Do I need a food hygiene certificate?

While a food hygiene certificate isn’t compulsory it is strongly recommended by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and other official bodies. It is also recognised by other businesses and customers who may be interested in your products.

Like larger food businesses, food hygiene and safety is just as important when you are selling cakes from home. Not only does it back you up if you ever want to expand your business, but it also shows your customers that you care about their safety.

In order to receive a Food Hygiene and Safety Certificate, you will have to follow rules and receive training from your local authority. Alternatively, you can take the online Food Hygiene and Safety Level 2 for Catering course by Virtual College to fast-track your certification and complete your training in your own time in an environment that suits you.

Related resources

Ben Piper - Virtual College

Author: Ben Piper

Ben is a member of the Virtual College marketing team. He has a degree in economics and writes about business and education issues. In his spare time he loves food, drink and films.

ISO 9001:2015
Crown Commercial Service Supplier


+44 (0)1943 605 976

Virtual College

Marsel House


West Yorkshire

LS29 8DD

Awards for footer
Gold and silver award winners at the Learning Technologies Awards 2017 - including gold for excellence in the design of learning content.


We are in the process of moving to one Virtual College website. If you want to go back to a course, or start a course, bought from our old website then you may need to login to our original learning management system. Otherwise, please proceed to our new learning management system to return to your training.


You are already logged in. Click the button below to be taken to your LMS dashboard. Alternatively, click logout to leave the system.