ACT food safety legislation
As a food business owner or manager, you need to be sure you comply with:
- Federal government food safety laws
- ACT government food safety laws
- Local council legislation
If you don't comply, you risk being fined, prosecuted, or even having your business closed down.
Below, you'll find information on:
- all government requirements
- how to comply
- what happens if you don't comply
- who needs to do a Food Safety Supervisor Course
- other compliance information
ACT territory laws and requirements
In the Australian Capital Territory, food safety requirements are set by the Food Act 2001.
This Act requires that food sold in the ACT is safe and suitable for human consumption and meets all standards set out in the Food Standards Code.
Food Safety in ACT is governed by the ACT Health Protection Service.
Regulating & monitoring food safety in ACT
The ACT Health Protection Service is responsible for regulating and monitoring food safety across the entire ACT food industry. This includes:
- Food business registration
- Conducting food business inspections
- Providing food safety resources
- Specifying food safety training requirements
- Publishing the Register of Food Offences
- Managing kilojoule display legislation
Food safety training requirements
One of the key requirements in the Food Act relates to food safety training.
Every food business must have at least one designated Food Safety Supervisor on staff at all times.
Food Safety Supervisor training
Food Safety Supervisors must oversee all staff and work practices to reduce the risks of foodborne illnesses in their workplaces.
Anyone associated with the handling of food in a food business may become the nominated Food Safety Supervisor, from business owners to kitchen hands.
AIFS has been authorised to deliver Food Safety Supervisor training that meets all legal requirements in the ACT.
Food Safety Supervisor training must be completed at least once every five years in the ACT.
If your certificate has expired you will need to complete a Food Safety Supervisor course with AIFS to receive re-certification.
Food businesses have 30 working days from the date of expiry to ensure the appointed Food Safety Supervisor renews their training and obtains new Food Safety Supervisor certification.
Federal & local laws and requirements
What happens if I don't comply?
The consequences of not complying with the relevant food safety legislation can be serious.
Suspended or cancelled licence
For serious offences, food business licences may be suspended or cancelled. This effectively closes your food business and prevents further trading.
Fines (penalty notices) may be issued for each offence committed. These often run into tens of thousands of dollars.
For serious breaches of legislation, the ACT Health Protection Agency may prosecute employees, proprietors, managers and/or individual company directors.
Register of food offences
In the ACT, the names of food businesses that have breached food safety legislation are available to the public via the Register of Food Offences.
Prohibition or seizure orders
When public health is at risk, your business may be forbidden to handle food and you may have food seized from your premises and destroyed.
Brand & reputation damage
If a serious food safety incident occurs and is widely reported in the media, your business could struggle to recover its reputation.