Food Safety

Food Safety

We play an active role in protecting the health of our community, including by helping make sure the 800+ local food businesses follow high standards so the food they sell is safe to eat and doesn't make people sick.

To tell us about a food business you believe is selling unsafe food or is not clean, contact Council's Environmental Health team on 4732 7777 .

Our Environmental Health Officers regularly advise and inspect food businesses including restaurants, cafes, child care centres, school canteens, kiosks, mobile food vans and temporary food stalls.

We work with business owners to help you understand and meet the legal standards, and when necessary we may need to take regulatory action.

For further information contact our Environmental Health team on 4732 7777.

What is a food business?

A food business is deemed any person selling food or operating stalls or mobile vans used for selling food for human consumption, including any produce, fruit and vegetables or pre-packaged food, under the Food Act 2003 (NSW) (the Act). This includes not-for-profit organisations. In addition to typical restaurant and takeaway shop, the following may also be a food business if they sell food: home industries, chemists, cinemas, corner stores, food transporters, caterers, video shops, petrol stations, public swimming pools and sport facilities, as well as food sellers at temporary events such as festivals, fairs, markets and fetes.

The sale of food includes where food is provided as part of a service, is covered by an entry fee, offered as a prize or reward, or where samples are offered to promote a product.

Legal requirements

Food safety in NSW is legislated under the Food Act 2003 and the Food Regulation 2015 which require compliance with the Food Standards Code, including the Food Safety Standards developed by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) (previously called the Australian and New Zealand Food Authority).

Visit the Food Standards Australia New Zealand website for information and to see the Food Safety Standards.

Understanding the new food safety standard 3.2.2A

From 8 December 2023 food businesses across Australia will need to meet new food safety requirements in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code. Standard 3.2.2A is a new food safety standard for retail food businesses that aims to improve food safety and consumer confidence. There are three (3) food safety management tools which include:
• Food Safety Supervisor (FSS);
• Food handler training; and
• Substantiation of critical food safety controls (evidence tools).

Standard 3.2.2A classifies businesses as Category One (1) or Category Two (2) businesses. Generally speaking, a Category 1 business would include (but not limited to) restaurants, takeaway outlets, caterers and bakeries. Whilst a Category 2 business would include (but not limited to) delicatessens, market stalls, supermarkets (with delis), service stations, convenience stores and other food retailers. 

foodsafetyinfographic a4

The NSW Food Authority with the assistance of Food Standards Australia & New Zealand have developed some free online tools to assist businesses with this new food safety standard. Such items include:
• Short quiz to find out which Food Safety Management Tool applies to your business;
• A series of FAQs; and
• Guidance materials on the new Standard 3.2.2A.
This information is available on the NSW Food Authority website at:

Fitout requirements for food business premises

There are certain requirements for premises to be used for preparation or sale of food. For example see AS4674-2004 - Construction and Fitout of Food Premises (available for purchase from Standards Australia).

Applying to Council for permission to construct or fit out food premises? See our Environmental Health Checklist for Food Premises.

Home Based Food Business

What is a home-based food business?

Home-based businesses use their home (domestic premises) to handle food for sale. They include, for example preparing food for sale at local markets, on-line sale or school canteens in a home kitchen; home-based catering businesses; bed-and-breakfast and farm home-stay accommodation; home-based childcare businesses that provide food; restaurants with accommodation for the owner, family or staff.

The handling of food intended for sale includes all activities that may take place in relation to food including cooking, preserving, processing, preparing, packaging, storage and transportation. The sale of any food includes any gain to the business from providing the food, not just the direct exchange of money for food. ‘Food premises’ in the context of home-based businesses includes land and structures used jointly or in part as a private dwelling that are also used for handling food for sale. It includes food business activities in the business owners’ home or in another person’s house.

Regardless of the scale or type of operation, home-based businesses, like all food businesses must comply with the relevant parts of the Food Standards Code including Standard 3.2.2, Standard 3.2.2A and Standard 3.2.3, and Part 1.2 – Labelling and Other Information Requirements. Depending on the scale and complexity of the activities being undertaken by the business, the application of food safety requirements to domestic premises should take an outcomes-based approach to balance practicality with the management of the food safety risks. The NSW Food Authority has provided the attached advice for home-based food businesses.

What are the planning requirements?

Some sort of planning certification or approval is required before you can commence these kinds of home businesses. You need to consider the extent of your home that will be used for the business activity, the likely impacts, and whether the design, construction and fitout of your residence complies with the relevant health standards. If unsure, you should seek guidance from a planning specialist. Food business registrations won’t be processed unless the applicant has demonstrated that there is the necessary planning approval.

Registration with Council

All retail food businesses in Penrith City must be registered with Council and are subject to routine health and hygiene inspections. Please make sure Council has up-to-date information about the owner and contact details of your food business.

To notify us of a new food business or a change of proprietor at an existing food business please complete a Registration of Food Premises form.

Council supported the roll-out of the NSW Food Authority Scores on Doors Program across Penrith from 1 July 2016. The community can see the food safety inspection results of local food businesses, providing another incentive for businesses to maintain high levels of food safety. Visit our Scores on Doors page for more information.  

Most food businesses in NSW are required by law to appoint at least one trained Food Safety Supervisor and penalties may apply if your business does not comply. For more information visit the Food Safety Supervisor section of the NSW Food Authority website.

A copy of the Food Safety Supervisor certificate must be kept on the food premises at all times and our Environmental Health Officers can ask to see it. There must be at least one Food Safety Supervisor for each food premises and this person cannot be a Food Safety Supervisor for more than one premises. If a person or company operates multiple outlets, a Food Safety Supervisor will be required for each outlet. The Food Safety Supervisor must be trained by a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) approved by the NSW Food Authority. Not all training organisations that run food hygiene courses are approved by the NSW Food Authority to issue Food Safety Supervisor certificates. See the list of approved training organisations for Food Safety Supervisors. Refresher training is required every five (5) years.

Food safety training

In addition to the NSW Food Authorities Food Safety Supervisor requirements, Council provides periodic face to face food safety training. For the details of when our next training session will occur, please contact the Environmental Health Team on 4732 7777. The council also support additional free online training, in English and Cantonese, on the topic of food safety. Note: This free online training does not constitute a Food Safety Supervisor course.

To register, complete a Mobile Food Vending Vehicles Registration form. We will contact you to arrange an inspection of your vehicle. You may also need to complete an Application To Sell Food each time you wish to sell food at a temporary event in Penrith City.

Read Council's Fact Sheet for Mobile Food Vendors, see the NSW Food Authority's - Mobile Food Vending Vehicles (operation, construction and food handling guidelines), or see the below Notification and Fact Sheets for more information.

Note: If you are a mobile food vending vehicle operator who is attending a temporary or sporting event in our Local Government Area, please ensure you fill out the correct application form. This application can be found under the Temporary Food Stalls heading and is named – Application to Sell Food Form.

For the health of our community, Council requires all temporary food businesses including temporary food stalls and mobile food vending vehicles, to apply for permission to operate at events in our City. Council's Environmental Health team regularly inspect food businesses at local markets, festivals and other events.

Complete an Application To Sell Food and return it to Council's Health and Environment team at least two (2) weeks before the event. Approved operators need to follow the NSW Food Authority's Food Handling Guidelines for Temporary Events.

Read our quarterly food safety newsletter to stay up to date:

Council fact sheets:

See the NSW Food Authority fact sheets on a range of topics including:

  • Cleaning and sanitising
  • Doner kebabs
  • Labelling
  • Pest control
  • Sushi
  • Temperature control
  • Using eggs safely

See the Food Standards Australia NZ fact sheets on a range of topics including:

  • NSW Food Act 2003
  • Food Standards Australia New Zealand-The primary role of the Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) is, in association with others, to protect the health and safety of people in Australia and New Zealand through the maintenance of a safe food supply.
  • Food Safety Information Council- a non-profit group with representatives of State and Federal governments, food industry and professional associations. Membership is open to any organisation with an interest in promoting safe food handling practices for consumers.