Free Small Food Business Start-Up Seminar for Athlone

Monday, 13 April 2015

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) is holding a free ‘Small Food Business Start-Up’ seminar in Athlone to assist those working in small food businesses and those thinking of setting up a food business. The free, half day event brings together a range of experts to explore the requirements needed for businesses to get off the ground and to comply with all the relevant food safety legislation.

The event takes place from 8am to 1pm on Tuesday 21st April at the Hodson Bay Hotel,
Roscommon Road, Athlone. Booking is advised and further information is available at

Experts on the day will include representatives from the FSAI, the Health Service Executive and Teagasc. They will provide assistance and advice on everything from running a small food business, registering a new food business, food product development, food safety training requirements, setting up a food safety management system, labelling regulations, traceability, the food recall process, inspections and the information resources available from the FSAI.

Case studies on how to run a small food business and develop a new food product will be presented by two local companies: Karen Gordon of Roscommon Chocolate Company and Richard Siberry of Black Donkey Brewing. There will also be a number of Q&A sessions throughout the morning and experts will be available after the event for further discussion.  The Health and Safety Authority will be present to answer queries in relation to the health and safety requirements in a food business.  Microfinance Ireland and the Westmeath and Roscommon Local Enterprise Offices will also be present to offer advice and guidance. All About Jobs will be there to discuss the Government's work in job creation and tackling unemployment. 

Raymond Ellard, Director of Consumer Protection, FSAI notes that despite the economic downturn, Ireland has seen a 5% increase in the number of food businesses established over the last five years, with the total number now standing at over 47,000.  He states that the upcoming seminar in Athlone is particularly timely and provides a one-stop-shop for anyone who is thinking about starting a small food business and / or who has recently gone into business in the food sector. 

    “Our aim is to make it easier for new businesses to comply with all the various requirements and food regulations, and thereby reduce the barriers faced by food entrepreneurs seeking to enter the food sector,” says Mr Ellard. “This seminar is one of a number of free supports the FSAI provides on an ongoing basis to assist people thinking of setting up a new food business. Other resources include our free Advice Line at and our dedicated online resource at”

Register here for our Small Food Business Start-Up seminar in Athlone.