Feed Hygiene Regulation (183/2005): information for farmers

Last updated:
5 November 2012
Information on the requirement to register with a local authority under the Feed Hygiene Regulation.

About this information

Applies in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland

This information is for:

  • farmers and growers

Legal status:

This is an information note for farmers outlining their obligations under the Feed Hygiene Regulation. Although it refers to the legislation, it is not itself guidance to compliance with it, or to best practice.


The Feed Hygiene Regulation (183/2005) came into force in January 2006, replacing previous legislation on the approval and registration of feed businesses, and applies to all businesses that make, use or market animal feed. This includes most livestock farms; arable farms that grow, use or sell crops for feed use, and fish farms.


Farmers, as primary producers, have to follow basic hygiene procedures in relation to the feed they use or grow and ensure that hazards are properly controlled. These include measures to:

  • prevent the contamination and spoilage of feed;
  • clean equipment used for mixing, storing or transporting feed;
  • maintain records of feed used or sold. An information note on the records to be kept can be found at the link below.

There is also a code on feeding food producing animals that livestock farmers have to follow.

All of this is designed to help ensure that feed provided to animals is safe and that feed products can be traced in the event of a safety incident. It complements the requirements that apply to the production of food as set out in the Food Hygiene Regulations.

What farmers need to do

All livestock farmers, and farmers growing arable crops for use in feed, need to be registered with their competent authority -- in Great Britain, this is the local authority trading standards department, and in Northern Ireland the Department for Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD). DARD and local authorities maintain lists of feed business establishments, including farms, registered under Regulation 183/2005. If a farm is unsure whether or not it is registered, it is advised to contact the relevant competent authority. A model application form can be found at the link below.

Activities not covered
There are a number of activities outside the scope of the Feed Hygiene Regulation. This includes:

  • the private domestic production of feed for food-producing animals kept for private domestic production and for animals not kept for food production
  • the feeding of food-producing animals kept for private domestic consumption
  • the feeding of animals not kept for food production
  • the direct supply of small quantities of primary production of feed at local level by a producer to local farms for use on those farms
  • the direct supply, by the producer, of small quantities of primary products to local establishments directly supplying the final consumer (e.g. farms)
  • the retailing of pet food

(EC Regulation 183/2005 does not define 'small quantities'. However, the Agriculture Act 1970, section 68(2)(b) provides for an exemption of 25kg.)

The conditions of the Feed Hygiene Regulation do not apply to these activities and there is no requirement for farms to be approved or registered for carrying out these activities.

Where to find more information

A copy of the Regulation can be found on the European Union website at the link below. Annex I of the Regulations sets out the standards that apply to primary producers, and Annex III contains the Code on feeding food-producing animals. Only farms buying in and using feed additives and premixtures as such will have to apply the principles of HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points system).

If you have further questions please contact:

Animal Feed and Animal By-Products Branch
Food Standards Agency
Area 1B, Aviation House
125 Kingsway, London WC1B 6NH

tel: 020 7276 8471
email: feeddelivery@foodstandards.gsi.gov.uk