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Food, Beauty and Accommodation Business

All food business in Victoria requires a Food Act registration or notification to sell food to the public and must be registered with their Local Council.

The registration system allows environmental health officers to regulate and monitor local food businesses for compliance under the Food Act and National Food Safety Standards.


Registering a new food business

The Food Act classifies food businesses into four risk classes-Class 1 Class 2, Class 3 and Class 4.

  • Class 1 for premises serving potentially hazardous foods to customers at higher risk e.g nursing homes, hospitals and child care centres
  • Class 2 for premises engaged in manufacture or handling of any unpackaged, potentially hazardous foods, such as food that requires temperature control
  • Class 3 for premises handling low risk food or wholesale of pre-packaged food, or selling pre-packaged, potentially hazardous food
  • Class 4 for premises selling only shelf-stable, pre-packaged food

Before opening a new food business, it is best to discuss your application with an environmental health officer who will provide you with information concerning the requirements of a new food business.

For further information on registering a new food business download a copy of our Guidelines to setting up a food business.

Complete and submit an application for registration to our Environmental Health team along with the appropriate registration fee.

Transferring a food business

When purchasing an existing food business the Food Act registration must be transferred into the new proprietor’s name. Before a premise can be transferred an inspection of the food premises by Council is required. It is recommended that you arrange an inspection of the business prior to purchase.

A transfer application and Consent to release information form must be filled out and returned to Council prior to the transfer inspection.

Food labelling

Prepackaged food needs to be labeled in accordance with the Standards Code developed by Food Standards Australia and New Zealand.

The following information MUST appear on the food label and be in English:

  • Name of the food.
  • Premises and lot identification.
  • Business name and address.
  • Mandatory warning and advisory information including food additives and allergens regardless of the quantity, including eggs, nuts, milk, fish, sesame seeds, soy and wheat.
  • Ingredient labeling.
  • Date mark including ‘best before’ and ‘use by’.
  • Health and safety advice for consumers.
  • Nutrition information panel.
  • Characterising ingredient declaration (percentage labelling).
  • Country of origin.
  • Storage requirements

    The nutrition panel must include information about the levels of energy in kilojoules, protein, total fat, saturated fat, carbohydrates, sugars and sodium in that product. If you are making claims on the label such as ‘high in calcium’ then you must also include the level of calcium in that product.

    To calculate the nutrition panel for that product you may choose to use the nutrition panel calculator program on Food Standards Australia New Zealand. Additionally, you may choose to have the product tested by an appropriate analytical laboratory.

Food allergens

Many people in the community have food allergens or intolerances. If they eat or have contact with these foods, they may have an allergic reaction, with symptoms ranging from mild to severe to life-threatening. All food businesses should be aware of food allergens in order to protect their customers and avoid legal consequences.

Most food allergies are caused by peanuts, tree nuts, milk, eggs, sesame seeds, fish and shellfish, soy and wheat.

It is a legal requirement to clearly declare allergen ingredients on packaged foods. Allergen ingredients needed to be bolded and/or highlighted to ensure that they are clearly visible.

For unpackaged foods, the law requires that accurate food allergen information be provided to the customer upon request. Care must be given to ensuring menus and other advertising materials are true and correct.

Temporary and mobile food

All temporary and mobile food must be registered with a Victorian Council as well as register online with Streatrader. Prior to attending an event a Statement of Trade must also be lodged through Streatrader to notify Councils when you will be operating within their municipality.

Permits are requiered for itinerant trading under Council's Local Laws.

Community groups

Community groups often hold fundraising activities that involve the sale of food such as sausage sizzles, cake stalls and fetes. These activities require a food act registration or notification.

Common examples of community groups who register / notify council include:

  • Community groups conducting sausage sizzles or cake stalls
  • Community groups selling food at markets or festivals
  • Community groups cooking and selling food from a food truck or trailer
  • Schools holding fetes or festivals
  • Individuals selling food to raise funds for charity.

It is also highly recommended that volunteers involved with fundraisers do a basic food safety course.  Do Food Safely is a free online learning resource for people working with food. This online learning resource provides information about safe food handling. Participants can test their knowledge by completing the assessment at the end of the online course. A certificate of completion is provided if the assessment is successfully completed however it is not an accredited program. Do Food Safely For further information

Prescribed Accommodation

Prescribed accommodation premises are premises where more than five persons (who are not part of the proprietor's family) are accommodated must be registered with Council under the Public Health and Well Being Act 2008.

Premises which must be registered as prescribed accommodation include:

  • Residential accommodation
  • Hotels and motels
  • Hostels
  • Student dormitories
  • Holiday camps

Premises are inspected to ensure that appropriate standards are maintained to minimise transfer of infectious diseases. Follow up inspections may be conducted depending on the outcome of any inspections where works need to be undertaken or as a result of Council receiving a complaint.

Personal Care and Body Art Premises

All hairdressers, beauty therapists, nail technicians, tattooists, ear/body piercers or colonic irrigation businesses, including mobile or temporary businesses, must be registered with Wangaratta Rural City Council under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008.

This process involves submitting plans and specifications, completing a registration application form, and undergoing a final inspection before the new business can begin operating.

Unsafe or unhygienic practices within commercial businesses can affect the health of clients, the health of the operator and can aid in the spread of infectious disease. Procedures including the penetration of the skin, if not managed correctly, can be the means of transmitting organisms that cause disease like AIDS and Hepatitis B.

Hairdressers and Temporary Make Up

Eligible businesses – those that solely provide hairdressing and/or temporary make-up services at their premises – are able to apply for "one-off" or "on-going" registration. Some businesses will be required to apply for a new business registration. They include:

  • Proprietors of new hairdressing or make-up businesses;
  • Proprietors whose business premises moves location; or
  • Proprietors that transfer their business to a third party.

Council's Public Health Unit handles applications for registration of a new business and renewal of registrations.

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