Licensing & Permits

Food Retail Licences

All food retail establishments must be licensed in order to operate.  Each licence application is assessed on its own merits. Here is a self-checklist [PDF, 152 KB] for easy reference on the licensing conditions to fulfill. 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

  1. Approval from the land agency e.g. URA and HDB (referred to as planning permission from land agencies)*
  2. Tenancy agreement#
  3. 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 Societie
  4. Food Safety Course Level 1 Statement of Attainment (SOA) of foodhandlers
  5. Food hygiene officer certificate (for Food caterers, Restaurants, Foodcourts and Canteens only)
  6. Cleaning program
  7. Layout plan of premises (in scaled metric units)
  8. Letter of authorisation (when submission of application is not done by intended licensee/director of company holding the licence)
  9. 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.
  10. Supplementary Information form to capture business name, type of food sold, business operating hours, etc.
  11. 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 & premises with permission to cater only). Refer to the following link for more details.
  12. Photos showing the interior and exterior of the catering vehicle
  13. Vehicle log card or tenancy agreement for rental vehicle to prove ownership of catering vehicle
  14. 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 notes 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 SFA 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 licensing conditions by also verifying with the owner/landlord on the necessary renovations like installation of exhaust system, pipings for sinks etc.

New Licensing Condition

SFA has put in place new requirements for all personnel engaged in the sale and preparation for sale of food and drinks must wear masks or other forms of physical barrier. 

This is to notify that SFA, pursuant to Section 99(12A) and 99(12B) of the Environmental Public Health Act, will be introducing new licensing conditions for all personnel engaged in the sale and preparation for sale of food and drinks must wear masks or other forms of physical barrier.

This new licensing condition takes effect from 13 April 2020, and are applicable to both new and existing licensees. After 13 April 2020, operators who do not comply with this new licensing condition are liable for a penalty of up to $5,000 and/or suspension/cancellation of their licences.

In addition to the new licensing condition, during the period of COVID-19 pandemic, you are required to adhere to the additional requirements stipulated under COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Control Order) Regulations 2020 or any new regulations promulgated. Every individual must wear a mask over the individual’s nose and mouth at all times when the individual is not in his or her ordinary place of residence.

Operators must continue to comply with all other existing measures for safe distancing. Food handlers and employees who are unwell must not work in the premises. Food handlers and employees must also continue to implement the practices in the Sanitation and Hygiene Advisory for Food Establishment issued by NEA and SFA.

Renewal of Licence

Upon expiry of licence, operators are required to renew the licence if he/she wishes to continue with the business. Renewal of the licence can be made as early as two months before the licence expires by GIRO, AXS or GoBusiness portal. Operators will not be able to make payment and renew once the licence is expired and will be required to make a new licence application.

We strongly encourage operators to sign up for GIRO auto-payment as it is the most convenient way to pay licence fees. Once the GIRO arrangement is made, the operators do not need to track the licence expiry date or enquire how to renew the licence. If the operators do not wish to renew the licence, let us know and we will stop the GIRO arrangement. Please write to us via SFA’s Online Feedback Form.  or download the GIRO Application Form.

Please be reminded that it is an offence to operate a food establishment without a valid licence under the Environmental Public Health Act. Offenders may be fined up to $10,000 for operating a food establishment without a valid licence. 

*Please note that all existing licences issued by NEA before 1 Apr 2019 will remain valid till the stated expiry date.