Registration under the Food Act
Council is responsible for registering and inspecting a wide range of businesses that operate in Nillumbik Council. If you are considering starting a food business, contact Environmental Health to discuss the registration requirements. Council recommends new food businesses undergo plans approval to ensure the design and construction meets the relevant standards. If you design and construct a food premise without going through the plans approval process, registration may not be granted where the construction does not meet the relevant standards.
Transfer of business ownership
If there is an existing business registration an application must be made to Council to transfer the registration to the new owner of the business. It is possible to obtain information on the current condition of the business and issues that have been identified through inspections by an Environmental Health Officer. Consent from the existing owner must be obtained before Council can formally release information to a third party.
This information can be obtained by completing the Pre Purchase Inspection form that must be completed by both the existing owner and person who the information is to be released to. When settlement of a business purchase is complete, the completed transfer of registration form and relevant fee, together with the Certificate of Attainment for the Food Safety Supervisor (where applicable), must be submitted to Council as requested. Failure to do so may result in penalties.
For enquiries and to obtain a copy of relevant forms please contact Environmental Health on 9433 3340 or email Health.Services@nillumbik.vic.gov.au
Food Business Classification
Food businesses are classified depending on the type of food sold. The category that each business falls into determines the level of regulation and requirements imposed on the business.
Class 1 Premises
Businesses that predominantly handle potentially hazardous food that is served to vulnerable groups. Examples include hospitals, aged care facilities and child care centres. The business requires a food safety program to be written specifically for the business and a food safety supervisor for the site.
Class 2 Premises
Businesses whose main activity is handling unpackaged potentially hazardous foods which need correct temperature control to keep them safe. Examples include restaurants, caterers, cafes and most manufacturers. The business may require a standard food safety program to be maintained and a food safety supervisor for the site.
Class 3 Premises
Businesses whose main activity involves the handling or sale of unpackaged low risk foods or pre-packaged potentially hazardous foods not commonly associated with food poisoning. Examples include milk bars, convenience stores, wholesalers and water carters. The business requires only minimum records to be kept.
Class 4 Premises
Businesses that pose a low risk to public health. Generally this includes the sale of pre-packaged shelf stable foods. Examples include uncut fruit and vegetables, bottle shops, simple sausage sizzles. The business does not generally require records to be kept, these business are encouraged to be registered on the state wide Streatrader system
Under the Food Act 1984, all food business owners (and community groups who sell food) are legally responsible to ensure that food sold or prepared for sale is safe to eat. Nillumbik Shire Council is responsible for protecting the health of the community by minimising unsafe food being sold within the municipality. All food businesses are required to be registered with their local council.
The Act also requires food premises to comply with the Food Standards Code Australia New Zealand (FSANZ). It is a criminal offence in Australia to supply food that does not comply with relevant food standards. It is also an offence to sell food which is damaged, has deteriorated or perished, is adulterated, or unfit for human consumption. This means that it is not only the business owner or proprietor who is responsible for food safety in the business, all staff that handle and prepare food for sale to consumers are responsible for food safety.
Without compromising food safety, the Act is designed to impose only reasonable compliance costs on businesses and community groups that sell food. It does this through matching the level of regulation to the level of risk of different food business activities.
Some of the activities that Environmental Health Officers undertake to monitor the safety of food prepared and sold in Nillumbik Shire include
- Plans approval for new food premises
- Inspecting food premises to ensure food is being stored, prepared and sold in a safe manner
- Conducting food safety program compliance checks
- Investigating food related complaints and incidents of illnesses associated with food
- Collecting samples of different foods for analysis to confirm the safety of the products
- Following up on food recalls to ensure affected products have been removed from sale to the public
- Ensuring foods are correctly labelled in accordance with the Food Standards Code
Temporary and Mobile Food
Streatrader is an online system used to manage the state wide registration implemented in July 2011. Streatrader is a recognised system that assists in the monitoring of mobile and temporary food premises operating throughout Victoria. Notifications and statements of trade must be completed and lodged online through Streatrader.
Streatrader was created to assist business owners and community groups to have a central registration and simplify the application process when trading in any Victorian municipality. Streatrader is used by
- Temporary food business. This includes community groups or businesses that conduct the activity within stalls, tents or other temporary structures at markets, festivals, fetes and other short term events
- Mobile food businesses - A vehicle that moves site to site, selling food. Such as, mobile vans and carts.
- Food vending machines - These are treated like a food premises. The owner must register each vending machine, not the premises where it is located.
- Water transport vehicles - Vehicles that are used to transport water for human consumption or that is used to prepare food, make ice for consumption, or preserve unpackaged foods. These are usually treated as a mobile food premises.
Go to Streatrader to create a log in. Once you have received your user name and password details you can then log in to Streatrader and inform relevant councils of your upcoming events. For information about Streatrader contact Environmental Health on 9433 3340 or email Environmental Health