Food Safety

There is a diverse range of food businesses operating within the Camden Council Local Government Area including;

  •  Restaurants, cafes and takeaway;
  • Supermarkets and convenience stores;
  • Mobile food vehicles;
  • Temporary food stalls;
  • Home-based food businesses;
  • Childcare centres and school canteens.

 All retail food premises must be designed, constructed and operated in accordance with the following;

Food businesses require approval via Complying Development Certificate or a Development Consent.  Should you require further information in relation to approvals, please contact Council’s Duty Planner on 4654 7777.

Council has an educational and regulatory role in ensuring food safety. Council’s Environmental Health Officers undertake inspections of all retail food premises to ensure compliance with the food safety standards and to protect the health and safety of the public.

Frequency of inspections depends on the risk classification of food premises which can be determined by a number of factors including types of activity conducted, types and quantity of food handled/produced (i.e. use of raw eggs) and the type of consumer (i.e. vulnerable groups)

Whilst carrying out inspections, Council’s Environmental Health Officers focus on a wide range of issues including;

  • Cleanliness and effective sanitising;
  • Temperature control;
  • Good hygiene and food handling practices;
  • Skills and knowledge of food handlers;
  • Pest control;
  • Maintenance of premises and equipment.

A fee is charged for inspections in accordance with Council’s fees and charges schedule on Council’s fees and charges webpage.

 Council’s Compliance and Enforcement Policy outlines regulatory action Council can take including issue of written warnings, Improvement Notices, Prohibition Orders, Penalty Notices and Prosecution.

The Name and Shame Register on NSW Food Authority website details Penalty Notices and Prosecutions of food business


Skills and Knowledge - I'm Alert Food Safety Training 

All food businesses must ensure that staff handling food have appropriate skills and knowledge. Council currently provides access to free online training by “I’m Alert” which covers topics including food handler hygiene and safe food handling practices. Once completed staff are provided with a certificate of participation. To access this training click on the link below (This training does not replace the Food Safety Supervisor qualification requirements).

Camden Council - I'm Alert - FREE Online Food Safety Training

Food Business Notification

It is a requirement under the Food Act 2003 that all retail food businesses register their details with Council. To register a new business or notify any changes (including new ownership of an existing business) please complete a Food Premises Notification Form and return to Council prior to commencing trade.

Food Safety Supervisor Requirements

Most medium to high risk retail food business in NSW require at least one nominated Food Safety Supervisor to be trained and appointed.

Mandatory food safety supervisor training qualification has a 5 year expiry. Food Safety Supervisors must ensure they maintain current qualifications. Refresher courses are available for a Food Safety Supervisor if their initial Certificate has expired.

More information about Food Safety Supervisor courses can be found on the NSW Food Authority website:

Food Safety Supervisors (FSS) | NSW Food Authority

Home Food Business

Home food businesses that handle food intended for sale have the same requirements as other commercial food premises.

Examples of Home food business include;

  • Preparing food intended for sale at markets;
  • Home-based mobile caters;
  • Bed and breakfast accommodation.

 Council has developed a factsheet to outline the requirements including the Development application process and fit-out requirements - Home Food Business Factsheet

Temporary and Mobile Food

Council’s ‘Temporary Food Stall and Mobile Food Vehicle Policy’ outlines the approval requirements, administration process, construction, fit out and operational requirements of temporary food stalls and mobile food vehicles.

Temporary Food Stall & Mobile Food Vehicle Policy

 

Selling Food at Temporary Events

Approval from Council and the event organiser is required for food vendors to sell food at temporary events. A temporary food stall includes a marquee, structure, food vehicle, truck, trailer etc.

 There are 2 types of temporary food stall approvals: 

  • Annual Temporary Food Stall Approval: Valid for 12 months within a financial year, which enables trading at approved events on private and public land in the Camden Local Government area. 
  • Single event Temporary Food Stall Approval: Valid for a single specified event in the Camden Local Government area.

 Temporary Food Stall Application Form

 

Selling Food via Road Trading

Mobile food vehicles which sell food from public roads are required to have Council approval. Council offers a 12 month Mobile Food Road Trading approval. This approval is suitable for food vendors which sell ready to eat foods on a ‘stop and start’ trade basis e.g. coffee, ice cream vans. The approval is issued with various conditions which include where and how long a vehicle can trade.

Allergen Awareness

Food manufacturers, businesses and handlers have responsibilities to ensure that information about allergens is provided to consumers and that food handling practices are managed to prevent contamination.

Training and resources supported by NSW Food Authority and EHA are available to assist in learning about allergens and business and individuals responsibilities.

FA Training: About Food Allergy Training 

NSW Food Authority Resources

The NSW Food Authority has developed a range of food safety resources, to assist food handlers and consumers, some useful links are provided below;

Food Complaints

Complaints can be made to Council where consumers believe that food handling practices are at risk to safe food or there is a single case of food poisoning. Complaints regarding food borne related illness from non-retail premises or where there are multiple cases the NSW Food Authority needs to be contacted on 1300 552 406 or via the NSW Food Authority website.

 Council can investigate food complaints including:

  • Foreign matter found in food
  • Sale of unsafe/unsuitable food (including food past their use by date)
  • Concerns regarding hygiene and handling of food
  • Unclean premises
  • Pest activity

 Complaints can be made by contacting customer service on 4654 7777. The following information will be required:

  • Your name, contact number and email address (anonymous complaint may not be able to be investigated as the complaint cannot be verified/further information cannot be obtained)
  • The name and address of the food business
  • The date and time you witnessed the concerns or purchased the food
  • Any photographs/samples to support your complaint
  • Details of any food which was consumed
  • Details of any illness and symptoms including the length of time they were experienced
What happens next?

Council officers will consider the information provided, investigate complaints and where necessary take action to ensure compliance with the applicable legislation and in accordance with Councils Compliance and Enforcement Policy.

For more information, please contact an Environmental Health Officer on 02 4654 7777