Food Businesses

There are New COVID-19 Safety Plan requirements for Food Businesses

 

Food and Drink Premises

Glen Innes Severn Council employs Environmental Health Officers, who monitor food safety within the Local Government Area (LGA).

Activities undertaken by these officers include:

  •      Monitoring and inspecting food and drink establishments;
  •      Educating food shop owners;
  •      Promoting safe and hygienic food practices;
  •      Assessing new food shop proposals and extensions to existing food shops;
  •      Investigating food poisoning and unsafe practices; and
  •      Enforcing and prosecuting serious breaches of misconduct.

Before any new Food Premises opens, the applicant must organise a meeting with a Council Environmental Health Officer to discuss requirements including:

  •      Registration with Council and if applicable any NSW Food Authority Licensing requirements;
  •      Compliance with the Food Act 2003;
  •      The Food Regulation 2015; and
  •      The Food Standards Code.

Opening a food shop may be subject to Council Development Approval.

 

Notification of Food and Drink Premises

All food businesses must be registered with Council prior to operating within the Glen Innes Severn Council Local Government Area. This is a requirement under the Food Act 2003 and this information is used to create a Register of all Food Premises in the area.

Penalties apply under the Food Act 2003 for failing to Notify Council of condutcing a food and/or drink premises.

Food Business Registration Form

 

Food Safety Supervisor

What is a food safety supervisor?

Food Laws in NSW require certain food and drinks premises to have a certified Food Safety Supervisor (FSS) working in their business.

FSS details will be checked as part of Councils annual inspections and applicable businesses that do not have a FSS may receive a Penalty Infringement Notice.

Examples of businesses include restaurants, cafés, takeaway shops, caterers, bakeries, pubs, clubs, hotels and supermarket's that sell hot ready-to-eat foods.

A Food Safety Supervisor is a person who:

  • is trained to recognise and prevent risks associated with food handling in a retail food business
  • holds a current FSS certificate that is no more than five years, and
  • is not an FSS for any other food premises or any other mobile catering businesses, and
  • can train and supervise other people who handle food to see that it is done safely.

Food Safety Supervisors must be trained in specific units of competency and it must be done at a Registered Training Organisation approved by the NSW Food Authority.  The training can be done face-to-face, online, in the workplace, by correspondence, or a combination of these. A list of approved training providers can be found at here.

For more information read the Guide for Businesses on the Authority’s website, or contact your local council.

 

Annual Administration/Inspection Fees

An administration fee is charged to all food businesses that are inspected (excluding those that are not-for-profit and/or a charity). The annual administration fee is intended for enforcement agencies to recover the indirect costs associated with functions they carry out under the Food Act 2003. It is separate from a fee for inspection, which is charged under the Local Government Act 1993.

Many Councils use this administration fee to cover the cost of functions including, but not limited, to the following:

  • Periodic social media notices and mail outs providing food safety information to food shops.
  • Maintaining relevant food premises databases.
  • The involvement in any food recall activity as required.
  • Negotiating with various stakeholders such as solicitors, builders, shop fitters or contractors on behalf of an existing or new food business operator.
  • Meetings and training courses required by the NSW Food Authority.
  • Providing verbal advice on plans for new food businesses or changes to existing food businesses.
  • The inspection of premises that may have been subject of a complaint which, upon inspection, cannot be substantiated and consequently no inspection fee is charged against the business.
  • The service of letters of an advisory or warning nature.
  • The issue of Scores on Doors certificates to eligable businesses who meet the requirements.
  • In serious situations where the closure of a business or part thereof is required in the interests of food safety, the service of a Prohibition Order and the subsequent Clearance Certificate.

An additional inspection fee is charged to food businesses that are identified to not meet a suitable level of compliance. A re-inspection fee may also be charged if a non-compliant premises requires additional inspections.

In addition Councils may from time to time be involved with food sampling programmes or other initiatives in association with the NSW Food Authority and no charge is directed to the businesses involved.

Further more there may be times when a Council needs to negotiate with a property owner on behalf of a food shop proprietor, for example in the case of building repairs or the availability of common staff toilets, and no charge is directed to the business.

 

Section 608 of the Local Government Act 1993 provides that Council's in NSW may charge approved fees for various services provided.

Current fees and charges can be found in Council's Operational Plan. Each year Council reviews the current Operational Plan and places a Draft plan on public exhibition and comment for 28 days, this draft details the current and proposed fee changes for all Council Fees and Charges. Comments or objections from the public on the proposed fees and charged are invited during that period.

Following the 28 day exhibition period, comments and objections from the public are considered and Council then adopts the fees and charges, with any changes as deemed required.

Failure to pay fees may result in the debt being referred to a debt collection agency and details may be forwarded to credit authorities in the event of non-payment.

 

Report Unsafe Food Practices

As a consumer it is critical that you can identify poor quality products and food handling.

Avoid and report the following products:

  •      Out of date products;
  •      Pre-opened lids;
  •      Swollen and dented cans;
  •      Stained or mouldy food;
  •      Leaking containers;
  •      Unrefrigerated potentially dangerous foods;
  •      Evidence of Pests;
  •      Unhygienic food handling practices under the Food Standards Code; and
  •      Perished, cracked or broken crockery and glasses.

Further information can be found on the NSW Food Authority Website or contact a Council Environmental Health Officer.

 

Contact Details

Councils Development, Planning and Regualtory Services Department on (02) 6730 2350 or you may email Council at council@gisc.nsw.gov.au.