Farming & Primary Production

On this page, Primary Producers can find information on hygiene legislation and specific areas including:

Please note, many of the links on this page will take you to an external website (food.gov.uk), and Food Standards Scotland has no responsibility for the content.

For information on Shellfish, see our Shellfish pages

For the Approved Meat Sector, see our Meat Approvals pages

Information on Animal feed is in our Animal Feed section.

Hygiene legislation

Find the answers to your questions on how hygiene legislation can affect your business.

Read how hygiene regulations give food business operators some flexibility in meeting required standards.

Download our inspection guidance.

Record-keeping

Guidance on record-keeping requirements for businesses and enforcement authorities.

Dairy

Guidance on controls for raw milk (including antibiotic residues), cheese production and eggs.

Dairy guidance

Raw milk

Raw drinking milk and raw cream control requirements in Scotland

It is an offence to place raw milk or cream on the market for direct consumption in Scotland - this includes distribution.  The ban includes sheep, goats, buffalo and any other species farmed for its milk.  Raw drinking milk and cream has historically been recognised as a high risk to public health as it was linked to a high number of food poisoning outbreaks, mainly Salmonella, Campylobacter and E.Coli O157 infection, and 12 potentially associated deaths in Scotland. 

To mitigate this risk mandatory pasteurisation of raw cows’ drinking milk was introduced in Scotland in 1983, and extended to drinking milk from all farmed animals in 2006.  The Scottish policy of mandatory pasteurisation is consistent with the Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food advice, who recommend pasteurisation as the key critical control point in the prevention of milk borne disease.  It is also in line with the recommendations of the E.coli Task Force Report from 2001, commissioned after 21 people died in a major food poisoning outbreak in Wishaw in 1996, which highlighted the raw milk ban in Scotland as a positive step in protecting consumers from the risks of E.coli O157.  Mandatory pasteurisation also protects the wider community, as milk borne pathogens such as E.coli O157 are known to be transmitted through person to person contact.

Given the historical evidence and weight of expert scientific opinion in favour of mandatory pasteurisation, there are currently no plans to lift the ban on direct sales of raw drinking milk in Scotland. 

 

Cheese recovery

Guidance on cheese production for the dairy industry and local authorities.

Antibiotic residues

What food operators need to know about testing milk for antibiotic residues.

Eggs

Information on the areas subject to inspection and the standards expected of Scotland’s egg producers.

Fish

Guidance on hygiene for fish producers.

Fish guidance

Fishery Products Charges Regulations 2007

Food businesses landing fishery products in the UK from other countries need to pay a contribution to local authorities, to help cover the cost of hygiene inspection and analysis. Find out about Fishery Products (Official Controls Charges) Regulations 2007.

Freezing guidance for control of parasites in fishery products

EU legislation says certain fishery products that are intended to be eaten raw need to be frozen before use, to protect consumers against parasites. So we recommend businesses that produce or sell fishery products read this guidance on freezing requirements for fishery products intended to be eaten raw or lightly cooked.

Approved fishery producers

Information on Approved Premises in Scotland is held on our Local Authority Approvals pages.

Wild game

Hygiene regulations for food businesses and individuals who hunt and supply wild game.

Farmers Markets

See our guidance.

Cleaner animals

Hygiene and cleanliness standards for cattle and sheep being presented for slaughter.

There is more information on animal slaughter on our Meat Approvals pages.

Produce

Produce guidance

Fresh Produce

A factsheet on the practical food safety and risk assessment of fresh produce.

Manures

How to develop safety plans for farm manures, to reduce microbiological contamination of ready-to-eat crops.

Pesticides

When pesticides are authorised and monitored by the Chemicals Regulation Directorate, we make sure food safety is a priority. We also relay public concerns to the expert committees consulted on pesticides. Read more about the authorisation, regulation and surveillance of pesticides on food.gov.uk.

Veterinary medicines

Information on the use of veterinary medicine in food production.

Snails

Guidance on producing, harvesting and importing terrestrial snails for human consumption.

Related Publications/Resources