If you plan selling your meat – whether you are buying in feed or mixing your own - you must be registered with your local authority as a food business. In addition, if you want to blend your own cereals and pre-mixed vitamins and minerals, you have to apply for a mixing licence, because mixing feed is considered to be a higher risk activity. As numerous diseases can be passed through the food chain, regular inspections may also be required for producers who use home-made feed. The regulations may seem tiresome, but they are there for a reason - to ensure that animal feed is produced, stored, and used safely, and has full traceability, in the event of a disease outbreak or food safety incident.
Remember that registration also applies to anyone feeding permitted catering waste or co-products (such as whey, brewers’ grains, bakery products - see the April issue of Country Smallholding) to animals destined for public consumption.
You must follow basic hygiene procedures in relation to feed handling and ensure that hazards are properly controlled. These include preventing feed being spoiled or contaminated; cleaning equipment used for mixing, storing, or transporting feed; and maintaining records of feed or former food products used.
Finally, if you are considering mixing your own feed, or storing co-products, bear in mind that you have to have good storage facilities which protect all ingredients from pests, such as rodents.