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Roles and responsibilities

Local government

Local government are responsible for:

  • enforcement of certain offence provisions
  • enforcement of the Food Safety Standards
  • licensing food businesses
  • accrediting food safety programs.

Local government environmental health officers may inspect any food business in their area regardless of whether they are licensed or not, to ensure that food businesses are selling safe food and are complying with the Act and the Code.

Read more about licensable businesses including information about:

  • Mobile food businesses
  • Non-profit organisations.

Read more about Food safety programs

Guidelines

More local government resources

Local government reports

We report on food safety regulation activities across all the local government jurisdictions:

Food businesses

A food business is a food business, enterprise or activity that involves:

  • the handling of food intended for sale, or
  • the sale of food; regardless of whether the business, enterprise or activity concerned is of a commercial, charitable or community nature and whether it involves the handling or sale of food on 1 occasion only.

Some food businesses are also required to be licenced and have additional responsibilities under the Act in carrying on their food business.

A licensable food business is a food business that:

  • involves the manufacture of food (making food by combining ingredients)
  • is carried on by an entity other than a non-profit organisation and involves the sale of unpackaged food by retail
  • is carried on by a non-profit organisation and involves the sale, on at least 12 days each financial year, of meals prepared by the organisation at a particular place.

Read more about food businesses that require a licence

Read more about requirements for non-profit organisations

Responsibilities

All Queensland food businesses, regardless of whether they are required to have a food business licence, are required to comply with the Food Act 2006 (the Act) and the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code (the Code).

All food businesses in Queensland are required to notify 13HEALTH (telephone: 13 432 584) when a reasonable suspicion has been formed that food at, or sold from, their premises has been intentionally contaminated.

Laboratories and food businesses that test food and isolate a prescribed contaminant are required to:

Read more about intentional contamination and the reporting requirements

Read more about the general requirements for owners/proprietors of food businesses

Auditors

The role of an auditor is to:

  • provide advice to local governments about accreditation of food safety programs
  • conduct audits of accredited food safety programs,
  • prepare audit reports and provide a copy of these reports to the local government and the holder of the accredited food safety program.

Auditors approved under the Act do not have any enforcement powers and cannot require a food business to make any changes to their food safety program or the food business, whether it is in relation to their processes, documentation or structural fit-out.

Only local governments have the authority under the Act to direct a food business to make any changes to their operations. 

Read more about auditing food safety programs

Last updated: 5 July 2017