Last modified:

Friday 10 September 2021

The butcher licence is an authorisation you require if you want to operate a butcher shop or a delicatessen. This licence is required for the sale, marketing, and cutting for commercial purposes of fresh, prepared, or conserved meat.


The manager must provide proof of their professional skills through:

  • a diploma issued by a professional teaching establishment;
  • proof of learning;
  • three years of full-time or four years of part-time professional experience certified by a certificate issued by the national social security office, or by a social insurance fund for self-employed workers or by any other certifying document.

In addition to a butcher licence, those not from the European Union, with the exception of those with an exemption, must also have a professional card for foreign nationals.

Validity period

This licence remains valid provided that all the conditions are met. In case of modification of the manager or operator, the legal form of the operator or their address, a new licence must be requested.

Other formalities to be completed

  • Obtaining authorisation from the inspectorate of foodstuffs from the SPF “Affaires sociales, Santé publique et Environnement”;
  • Registering with the Crossroads Bank for Companies through an approved one-stop business shop;
  • Meeting any VAT obligations;
  • Joining a social insurance fund and a mutual fund.


It is a good idea to be in possession of a butcher licence before starting the activity.


You need to send the following documents to “Bruxelles Economie et Emploi”:

  • the completed butcher licence application form (FR),
  • proof of the manager's professional skills (diploma, certificate of learning, or proof of professional experience),
  • where applicable, the company's articles of association,
  • where applicable, an original copy of the butcher licence already issued for the business concerned, or a sworn statement in case of loss of theft of this licence. 

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