Online tool helps food businesses understand new regulations

  • Jo Goodhew
Food Safety

Food Safety Minister Jo Goodhew launched an online tool today that will help food businesses discover how they will be affected by the new Food Act 2014, which comes into force in March next year.

“Under the new Food Act there will be different rules for different businesses, depending on what they make or sell, and to who,” says Mrs Goodhew.

“We’ve created this online tool so that anyone providing or selling food can easily find out how the new food safety rules apply to them.”

The tool moves through a series of ‘yes/no’ questions to identify which requirements businesses will need to follow.

“We have about 45,000 food businesses throughout New Zealand, as well as people involved in other food activities,” says Mrs Goodhew.

“The new Food Act will ensure low to medium risk businesses are not overburdened by requirements, and that high risk businesses, such as those dealing with raw meats, will meet more stringent food safety criteria.

“We designed the Act so food businesses can manage food safety themselves in a way that suits their business, while ensuring New Zealand has a system that meets the highest possible standards.

“There is also a clear exemption for traditional Kiwi activities like fundraising, sausage sizzles, and home baking at school fairs. The only rule is to ensure that the food is safe and suitable to eat,” says Mrs Goodhew.

The new Food Act comes into force on 1 March 2016. Existing businesses will be given a three-year transition period to move to the new rules.

People can find out which rules will apply to their business, and when they will need to transition to the new rules, on the MPI website: