Food safety supervisor

What is a food safety supervisor?

All food businesses must ensure their staff have the skills and knowledge required to safely handle food in their roles. Many food businesses will need to nominate a food safety supervisor to make sure of this. A Food Safety Supervisor can train and supervise staff about safe food handling practices.

A food safety supervisor is someone who:

  • Is trained to identify and prevent food handling hazards at your premises;
  • has completed a Statement of Attainment in nationally recognized units of competency plus key focus areas as determined by the Food Authority from a Registered Training Organisation (RTO). A list of approved RTO's is available on the NSW Food Authority website;
  • has the ability and authority to supervise other people handling food at the premises and ensure that the food handling is done safely.
  • holds a current Food Safety Supervisor Certificate (no more than five years old);
  • is not a Food Safety Supervisor for any other food premises

What businesses do the food safety supervisor requirements affect?

The Food Safety Supervisor requirement applies to businesses serving food that is:

  • ready-to-eat
  • potentially hazardous (i.e requires temperature control), and
  • not sold and served in its package.

Examples of these businesses include: restaurants, cafes, takeaway shops, caterers, bakeries, pubs, clubs, hotels, temporary premises, mobile food vendors and supermarket hot food sales.

At present, the food safety supervisor requirements do not apply to businesses that are:

  • licensed by the Food Authority,
  • not-for-profit community and charitable causes
  • coffee vendors that only heat milk
  • school canteens (primary or secondary)
  • boarding schools
  • childcare centres and out of school hours care services
  • correctional centres
  • supermarkets (if heated food is not sold)

The Food Safety Supervisor requirements do not apply to food businesses premises that only do one or more of the following activities only:

  • slice fermented meats or smallgoods, or both
  • slice or portion cheese, or both
  • process raw seafood
  • slice or portion fruit or vegetables, or both.

What do I need to do to comply with the food safety supervisor requirements?

To comply with the requirements businesses must:

  1. Nominate a food safety supervisor for the business.
  2. Select a NSW Food Authority approved registered training organisation and undertake the food safety supervisor training course. A list of approved training organisations is available on the NSW Food Authority website
  3. Keep a copy of the food safety supervisor certificate at the premises for viewing by our Environmental Health Officers.
  4. After five (5) years, the food safety supervisor is required to undertake refresher training.
  5. If a food safety supervisor leaves or ceases to act in that position, businesses will need to appoint and train a new food safety supervisor within thirty (30) days.

Penalties for failure to comply with food safety supervisor requirements

Penalty Notices of up to $660 (Food Act 2003) may be issued where a business fails to meet the requirements.