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The Nationwide Caterers Association
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Thinking of

Starting up a Mobile Catering business?

You've come to the right place

First things first...

Don't set yourself up for failure.

As a new business it’s safe to assume Environmental Health officers, Event Organisers and Insurance Providers will consider you a higher risk than experienced catering businesses. Our mission is to raise the bar for the industry and help you trade legally, safely and profitably. If you're just starting out it's critical that you start the right way and make this your ethos too.

Joining the association is a sign that you're serious about running your business the right way. We don't just get you on the right track, we keep you on it. 50% of our members are experienced caterers renewing year after year, with more and more joining via recommendations from other traders, Event Organisers and even Environmental Health Officers.

We're here for you when you're ready to get going. In the meantime you’ll find the answers to most of your questions below. And if you can’t? Give us a call on 0121 603 2524

Here's pretty much everything you need to know...

Starting your catering business - the list

This checklist covers all the stuff you physically need to be able to start up a mobile catering business, and make it profitable in the long run. The bad news? There's a lot of items on this list. The GREAT news? We can provide you with pretty much all of them. > Find out more

What do you need legally

Find out what you need to operate your own mobile catering business safely and legally. It can be daunting, but we're here to help.
> Find out more

What food should you sell?

As Britain has become more cosmopolitan our attitude towards different / interesting food has changed dramatically. There are thousands of different food types you can choose to sell.

> Find out more

Where can I work as a mobile caterer?

You want to run your own catering business but you're not likely to be looking at doing it as a hobby. You need to run it efficiently and make good money from it. Before you can do that you'll need somewhere to work and customers to serve. Let's talk about where you can work and the advantages / disadvantages of your options.
> Find out more

Mentoring for caterers

The good news is you can get up and running with minimal investment but you must do your research and do things the right way.
> Find out more

what type of setup should I run my catering business from?

What type of catering setup are your going to sell your food (or drinks) from? A trailer, van, cart or gazebo? Read about the advantages and disadvantages of each to help you decide.
> Find out more

What next?

You know what you want to do but the technical and legal aspects are daunting and you're finding it hard to get off the ground confidently. That's what we're here for and we'll hold your hand through it all. You'll have access to everything you need and can get on with enjoying your new catering business knowing it's all taken care of.
> Find out more

Whether you're a newbie or have been in the game for years, partnering with a catering mentor could help you increase your sales up to an additional £2,520 in a single weekend. The various levels of mentoring available are suitable for catering newbies who are daunted by the start-up process, small event traders keen to scale up and long-term traders who aren’t enjoying the returns that they deserve.
> Find out more

Handy mobile catering start up guides...

Have your say!

Every start-up caterer has worries and concerns. Tell us yours and we’ll tailor our support to help you. Simply take this 1 minute survey.

> Take the survey

Take the survey

Is starting a mobile catering business for you?

Is Mobile Catering for you?

10 Reasons why Starting a Mobile Catering Business...

    - Is a Great Idea > Find out why
    - Might not be a good idea for you > Find out why

Safe, Legal, Profitable

Since things kicked off in 1987 The Nationwide Catering Association (NCASS) have been
shaping the UK mobile catering industry. Our aim is to help make your catering business safe,
legal and profitable.

Membership packages are available to suit all kinds of businesses, so there’s going to
be one that fits your business perfectly. You’ll save save a heap of money, receive more work
, have all of your legal documents taken care of, gain instant access to the most
respected training courses in the catering industry and have over 27 years of experience waiting
for you at the end of the phone should you need any advice or support. Plus, as a member you’re
taken under our wing and are protected under our Primary Authority Partnership.

Join the Nationwide Caterers Association for just
£20.25 p/m


Work opportunities, legal documents, essential and invaluable advice, training codes, cashback and lots more are the name of the game here at NCASS HQ. And with prices starting from just £20.25 per month, why not become the latest member of the NCASS Family? Maximise the profitability of your food business with NCASS membership. > Find out more

Want to talk about membership? Call 0121 603 2524

or to request a call back click here

Have one of our team give you a call

Mobile Catering Menu

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Latest News

Fake Britain episode reveals deadly dangers of fake camping stoves

by Sophie Haigh | Aug 22, 2019

You may have tuned in to last night’s episode of Fake Britain, which focused on the deadly consequences that fake camping stoves can have on an inconspicuous consumer. Presenter Dom joined a keen camper who had suffered burns to his face and arms after a £20 stove bought online from a discount shop exploded upon being lit.  

Surrey Fire Brigade, clad in full protective gear, put the fake stoves to the test and discovered the deadly impact that a counterfeit stove can cause, of which there are thousands being sold in the UK each year putting the general public at risk of serious fatalities. Trading Standards found fake CE labels on the stove and evidence that the equipment had not been checked at any stage upon delivery to the retailers or wholesalers. The sellers responsible received fines of £15k and the 1,200 stoves that hit the UK market were withdrawn from sale.

We’ve spoken to many caterers who are, or have considered, using camping equipment when starting up in the catering industry - our advice is always please, under no circumstances, use camping stoves for your business. Each year there are lots of incidents of explosions caused by this type of burners and we have come across caterers who have suffered life changing burns and disfigurement following their use. Camping stoves should only be used for short durations of time as they don’t feature the flame failure devises that commercial equipment does. In addition to that, large commercial pans on a camping stove will reflect heat back onto the LPG cylinder causing it to over-pressurise, risking leaks from or even splitting the cylinder.

In addition, there are laws against using camping stoves as a main source of equipment. Caterers are legally required to have their LPG equipment checked by a qualified Gas Safe engineer at least once a year, but due to the gas tight seal at the gas cylinder connection they would be unable to inspect them, leaving you unsure if they’re safe and potentially risking lives every time they’re used. Ultimately, nothing will work in a caterers’ defence should an accident occur. Criminal proceedings could be brought against anyone found in breach of the law and if anything should happen, there would be no insurance pay outs; potentially risking an entire business and people’s livelihoods.

The Fake Britain episode only touches the surface of the risks associated with not buying stoves from reputable suppliers and how easy it can be to stumble upon counterfeit and potentially deadly equipment. It can be difficult to know where to source the best equipment from, and in fact, many experienced caterers fall trap to dodgy dealers. NCASS Equipment eliminates the chance that you may spend your hard-earned cash on a faulty, dangerous or wrong product. Our product reviews are written by real traders whose purchases are verified by NCASS and all specifications are listed so that you have the correct information; ensuring that the equipment you’re ordering is best suited for your business needs and safe for staff to handle.

If you’re in-doubt about where to source safe and compliant equipment, please call our Equipment Manager, Penny on 0121 603 2524 who will be able to advise. Remember, listings on websites that offer the best value for money are often too good to be true, so it’s always better double check with an expert and avoid any potential accidents. To watch the Fake Britain episode, click here

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Join for just
£20.25 p/m


Work opportunities, legal documents, essential and invaluable advice, training codes, cashback and lots more are the name of the game here at NCASS HQ. And with prices starting from just £20.25 per month, why not become the latest member of the NCASS Family? Maximise the profitability of your food business with NCASS membership. > Find out more

Want to talk about membership? Call 0121 603 2524

or to request a call back click here

The complete guide to profitable catering