Businesses and community groups that sell, transport, store or make food must be registered by law.
Food safety inspections
Council’s Environmental Health Officer inspects registered food premises to make sure food safety standards are being maintained.
Some examples of different registered food premises are:
- food manufacturers
- milk bars
- nursing homes and hospitals
- food stalls at festivals
- food vehicles
- school canteens, and
- pubs and clubs
Food sampling program
Council undertakes an annual food sampling program during which the Environmental Health Officer submits food purchased from premises within Loddon Shire for analysis to an accredited testing laboratory for analysis.
The food is analysed to check food safety and compliance with regulations and standards.
The number of samples Council is required to take is determined by the Department of Health.
Food safety complaints
Council investigates food safety complaints about food hygiene, foreign object contamination, suspected food poisoning and food handling.
A food recall is where the Victorian Department of Health, generally in conjunction with the manufacturer, decides that food is unsafe for sale and it needs to be recalled. The reasons for a recall can include:
- microbiological or chemical contamination
- presence of foreign matter
- labelling errors and packaging defects
- undeclared allergens.
Council receives information from the Department of Health about products that need to be recalled.
Council may contact businesses that are known to use or sell the recalled food products and ensure that they are not used and are removed from sale.
Food businesses involved in a food recall must carefully follow instructions from Council and the Department of Health for the removal of food from their shelves.
Further information can be obtained from the Department of Health and Food Standards Australia and New Zealand.
Food businesses not governed by Council
Some food businesses are not governed by Council, but by other authorities. If a business predominantly does one of the activities listed below, it should contact the relevant authority.
- meat or game handling or processing, poultry handling or processing, for example, a butcher
- fish and seafood handling or processing, for example, a fishmonger or seafood shop
Registration Authority - Primesafe
- cheese manufacturing or processing dairy products i.e. milk
Registration Authority - Dairy Food Safety Victoria