It is estimated that more than five million Australians get ill from eating unsafe food each year. Food safety is an important issue for everyone. Food businesses are required to ensure that they handle, store, display and sell food in a safe manner.
Council monitors the food safety and hygiene standards of food businesses. Licensing, education, regular inspections and enforcement ensures that food businesses are compliance with food safety legislation.
The following links relate to food safety legislation:
- Food Act 2006
- Food Regulation 2006
- Food Standards Code
- Food Safety Standards 3.2.2 – Food Safety Practices and General Requirements
- Food Safety Standards 3.2.3 – Food Premises and Equipment
Do I need a Food Business Licence?
The Food Act 2006 has identified the following food businesses as requiring a licence. Any food business that:
- involves the manufacture of food; or
- involves the retail sale of unpackaged food (cafe/restaurant/takeaway food bar) and is not a non-profit organisation; or
- is carried out by a non-profit organisation and involves the sale of meals on at least 12 days each financial year.
Food premises include temporary structures and mobile food vehicles, where food is handled. A licence is not required for the sale of pre-packaged food which has been pre-packaged by a licensed food packing company.
Can it be transferred?
What if my Licence is Lost or Stolen?
You can replace your licence. You just need to advise Council in writing of the circumstances and pay the relevant fee.
How long does this authority remain in effect?
A food licence is an annual licence that expires each year. All food licences will expire on 31 December each year. This is because Council sends renewals on 01 January annually. The Food Act 2006 gives you 60 days to have it renewed.
What are the pre-requisites to obtaining this Licence?
- Clients must ensure that the location is zoned appropriately.
- Where the business wishes to serve alcohol, a separate application must be made to the Liquor Licensing Division, Department of Tourism, Sport and Racing.
- A Food Safety Supervisor (PDF, 89kb) must be nominated. This person must have completed training. No licence can be held without a business having a Food Safety Supervisor.
How do I construct a new food shop?
There are Guidelines (PDF, 174kb) available to help you fit out your new food shop.
Do I need to Register my Premises, Place or Vehicle?
No. With the introduction of the Food Act 2006 there is no longer a requirement to hold a certificate of registration for any premises, place or vehicle at which food is sold, prepared, packed, stored, handled, served or supplied. This is because the licence has your premises, place or vehicle on it. You can't operate from a premises, place or vehicle unless it is on your food licence.
Do I Need a Food Safety Program?
Only certain businesses need a Food Safety Program. Information on Food Safety Programs can be found in the Fact Sheet (PDF, 220kb).
How do I Cancel a Food Licence?
If you need to cease operating before your license expires you must advise Council in writing.
Under the Food Act 2006 Certain Businesses no longer require a licence. These businesses include the following:
- The production of primary produce under an accreditation granted under the Food Production (Safety) Act 2000
- The handle and sale of fisheries resources under a buyer's licence issued under the Fisheries Regulation 1995
- Sale of only unpackaged snack food i.e. biscuits, cakes, confectionary, chips, nuts, glazed fruit
- Sale of only whole fruit and vegetables
- Sale of only seeds, pulses, dried herbs, tea leaves, coffee beans or ground coffee
- Grinding of coffee beans only
- Sale of drinks only (not including freshly processed fruit and vegetables)
- Sale of ice, including flavoured ice only
- You are a non-profit organisation and you provide meals that have been prepared by another organisation and the food is only stored, heated or otherwise prepared by you in accordance with the meal manufacturer's directions
- You are a non-profit organisation and sell food as part of an educational training activity conducted by your organisation involving food preparation, hospitality or catering
- You are a non-profit organisation and the meals you sell consist of only fruit, cereal, toast or similar food or the consumer of the meal helps to prepare it
There is no fee to cancel a food licence.
Need More Information?
For further information about this topic please contact Council's Manager Environmental Services on phone (07) 4761 5300.
Alternatively, the Queensland Health website provides a number of Fact Sheets, Guidelines and detailed information on Food Safety in Queensland.