What Is the Catering Industry in the UK?

Catering is about the serving of food to the public by way of some form of business. As a business in the UK, there are rules and regulations that must be followed.

There are different types of catering business establishments. They fall into different categories.


These are establishments that do not include offering some other accommodations like sleeping quarters for example. This would include establishments such as cafes, wine bars, food vans and fast food outlets.


Is the opposite to non-residential. These establishments provide additional services. Examples of these entities are bed and breakfasts, guest houses and public houses.

Non commercial entities

Includes places where food has to be served but not in the above two categories. Examples, of these, are hospitals or prisons.

Contract Catering

In these instances, there is no specific location owned by the caterer where the food is served, and the public attends to consume it. This form of catering encompasses preparing the food then delivering and perhaps serving it at a designated location. For example, for weddings, social or business events.

Within each of these categories, there are plenty of opportunities for different types of employment. Most often when it comes to catering thought is given to the contract catering. There are certain expectations that are put on these catering services by their users.

Consumers using catering services will often choose a catering service that is going to serve a specific type of food. Some of these business entities will specialise in what they have to offer. It will depend on the venues that they serve. If they are serving formal events such as weddings, they may have a small menu of choices. If they cater to corporate events, there may be an entirely different type of menu. With there being so many variations if what can be served it creates the need for some form of specialisation in contract catering.