All food retail establishments must be licensed in order to operate. Each licence application is assessed on its own merits. In general, NEA will issue a foodshop licence when the following conditions are met with:
- Compliance with the Code of Practice of Environmental Health (COPEH) and operational requirements for foodshops, which covers areas like minimum kitchen size, refuse management, noise and cooking fumes control etc. Please study the requirements appended. They will be verified through a pre-licensing check of the premises upon the completion of renovations and installation of equipment.
- Submission of relevant approvals and supporting documents
a. Approval from the land agency e.g. URA and HDB (referred to as planning permission from land agencies)*
b. Tenancy agreement#
c. Details of applicant - one of the following (where applicable):
i. Individual - Both sides of NRIC
ii. Company - Information Business Profile from Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)
iii. Society - Certificate of Registration from Registrar of Societies
d. Basic food hygiene certificate/Refresher food hygiene certificate of foodhandlers
e. Food hygiene officer certificate (for Food caterers, Restaurants, Foodcourts and Canteens only)
f. Cleaning program
g. Layout plan of premises (in scaled metric units)
h. Letter of authorisation (when submission of application is not done by intended licensee/director of company holding the licence)
i. Pest control contract covering the control of rodents, cockroaches and flies during the year-long licensing period. The inspection frequency of the food shop premises covered in the contract shall be at least once a month to detect any sign of pest infestation.
j. Supplementary Information form to capture business name, type of food sold, business operating hours, etc.
k. Food Safety Management Plan (with critical control points identified) or proof of registration for the “WSQ Apply FSMS for Food Service Establishments” course. (For Food Caterers only). Refer to the following link for more details.
l. Photos showing the interior and exterior of the catering vehicle
m. Vehicle log card or tenancy agreement for rental vehicle to prove ownership of catering vehicle
n. Cleaning program for catering vehicle
* Please note that this is potential pitfall for applicant. Applicant should ensure the relevant planning permission is obtained, prior to signing any tenancy agreement and investing in renovations/equipment for the premises.
# Please note that the submission of a tenancy agreement is not required during the initial stage of application for a licence. The tenancy agreement will only be required at the final stage, before NEA approves and issues the licence. You are advised not to sign any tenancy agreement, until the land agency concerned has approved the relevant use for the premises, and you are reasonably confident you can meet with the COPEH requirements by also verifying with the owner/landlord on the necessary renovations like installation of exhaust system, pipings for sinks etc.
Here is a self-checklist for easy reference on the requirements to fulfill.
How soon can my application be processed?
The total time taken by an applicant from the start of a food shop application to receipt of licence can typically vary from a week to a few months, depending on time taken to renovate the premises to meet the requirements, our pre-licensing checks on site to ensure compliance, complete and accurate submission of required documents, and payment of licence fee.
If you are taking over an existing food outlet, please note that the previous licensee will need write in to cancel his licence, before we can approve your application. Otherwise, there will be a delay of at least 2 week, as NEA will need to write to the existing licensee to confirm his licence can be cancelled.
Some key milestones are as follows:-
• We will respond to you within 5 working days upon receipt of the application.
• If the application is incomplete without basic details of applicant and layout plan of premises, you will be informed to furnish the information within 2 weeks. Upon furnishing the information, we will notify you on the requirements to comply for your application.
• After notification of the requirements, you may commence the set up or renovation of your premises according to the layout plan submitted in the application.
• Once completed, please inform the licensing officer to arrange for a pre-licensing site inspection to verify compliance.
• We will issue an approval letter to you within 5 working days after our pre-licensing inspection if everything is in order. This letter will also serve as notification to you to collect the licence.
• The licence will be issued to you upon payment of the licence fee.
Can an individual hold a NEA food shop licence if foreign workers are employed in the shop?
Ans : Only company entities are allowed to employ foreign workers in accordance with MOM policy. Companies that do so must register the food shop licence in the name of the company. Licenses issued in the name of an individual e.g. a Director will not be acceptable for the purpose of work pass applications.
For more information on work pass related matters, please refer to MOM webpage or call MOM Contact Centre at 64385122.
How much does the food shop licence cost and how long is the validity?
The Food Shop Licence costs S$130.00 and is valid for one year. For entertainment outlets serving food e.g. pub, bar, discotheque, and night club), the licence will cost $66.
Please click here for other FAQs.
Please click here for submission of food shop licence.
Please click here for update of food shop licence (eg. change in address, email, contact details).
Please click here for the renewal of food shop licence.
Please click here for the termination of food shop licence.
Should you have further enquiries please write in to contact_Nea@ nea.gov.sg. To help us assist you in the enquiry, please provide details of your intended food business including information on the food items being sold, how the items are processed, and type of equipment used.
Alternatively, you may contact any of the following offices for more information or walk in for free consultation on the application procedure/requirements:
North-West Regional Office (NWRO)
18 Attap Valley Road
Tel No : 67567678
Fax No : 67566848
North-East Regional Office (NERO)
174 Sin Ming Drive
Tel No : 64553177
Fax No : 64582080
Central Regional Office (CRO)
4545 Jalan Bukit Merah
Tel No : 62724266
Fax No : 62739641
South-East Regional Office (SERO)
70 Tannery Lane
Tel No : 67474811
Fax No : 67473863
South-West Regional Office (SWRO)
335 Clementi Road 14.5 km
Tel No : 64660544
Fax No : 64699082
For enquiries pertaining to the licensing and tenancy of hawker stalls, please contact our 24-hour Call Centre at 1800-2255 632.