All businesses that sell or handle food must be registered with one of the suitable registration authorities, under the Food Act 1984.
Most businesses should register with the council where their business is located or their food vehicle is garaged. This includes businesses such as supermarkets and fish and chip shops.
If your business mainly involves meat or seafood processing (such as butchers, boning rooms, and fish mongers), you must be registered with PrimeSafe.
PO Box 2057
South Melbourne VIC 3205
P: 9685 7333
F: 9696 5284
Visit the PrimeSafe website
If your business mainly involves dairy processing or manufacturing, you must register with Dairy Food Safety Victoria.
Dairy Food Safety Victoria
PO Box 8221 Camberwell North VIC 3124
P: 9810 5900
F: 9882 6860
Visit the Dairy Food Safety Victoria website
You need to do the following when providing us with plans for a new food business:
We will process your application within 14 days of receiving complete plans and specifications. We will then send you back:
We advise you not to begin any major work on setting up the new food premises until you receive the approved plan.
Our Environmental Health Officer (EHO) will conduct progress inspections during the construction of your food premises to ensure it complies with the Food Standards Code.
Before opening the food premises, our EHO will complete a final inspection. If the premises meets food safety standards, you can then apply for Food Act registration with us.
If you want to operate a food business from your home, you must register with us and meet certain requirements to ensure your business does not negatively affect your neighbourhood.
Before undertaking any works, you must:
Once all of the above requirements are addressed and satisfied, then approval can be granted to commence the suitable works to obtain registration under the Food Act 1984.
Alternatively, you can choose to lease a registered commercial kitchen that already meets the Food Act 1984 requirements.
To find out about kitchen availability at Council venues for hire, contact the relevant centre manager.
A classification system exists to ensure the regulatory requirements match the level of food safety risk at different types of premises. For more information, visit the Food Safety Victoria website.
Premises under classes 1, 2 and 3 must register with us.
Class 4 premises are exempt from Food Act registration and simply need to notify us that they exist by completing a Notification of a food premises form.
Follow these steps to prepare for food business registration:
All registered food businesses must renew their Food Act registration each year. We mail out renewal invoices in mid-November.
The business owner must inform us if details have changed in the last 12 months. Once your renewal payment has been processed, the business will be issued with a certificate for the next year's registration.
From 31 December, any food business that fails to pay for their renewal is considered unregistered.
The base renewal fee includes up to 5 full time staff (including owners and proprietors). Businesses that employ more than 5 employees must pay a staff fee, which is calculated on the number of part time and full time staff employed. For the purpose of the calculation 2 part time staff equates to 1 full time staff member. The staffing fee exists because larger businesses take longer to inspect than smaller ones.
For more information about Food Act registration, see the Department of Health website.