Cleanliness and Food Hygiene

Structural and Equipment Requirements

It is at Council’s discretion to decide if a food premises is safe and clean in which to operate. This will depend on the type of food being handled and sold and the business’ food practices. As a general summary, the following conditions for your premises, structure, and equipment must be met:

  • All walls, ceilings, benches and cupboards must be in a good condition and finished with a smooth, durable, impervious material capable of being readily cleaned, such as laminate for example.
  • A minimum of three sinks must be provided where one is dedicated to hand washing, only one for food preparation, and one for equipment cleaning (Class 1, 2 & 3 only).
  • The hand wash sink must be supplied with hot and cold water and equipped with liquid soap and paper towel.
  • Water used for all food preparation and cleaning purposes must be of drinking quality.
  • Storage facilities must be provided for all food products, utensils and equipment and kept uncluttered and easily accessible.
  • Adequate ventilation must be provided over all heating and cooking appliances.
  • Cleaning chemicals and pest control must be stored separately from food.
  • Garbage bins should have tight fitting lids and be kept clean.
  • Storage units and food stored in them must comply with the following temperatures: minus 15 degrees Celsius for freezers, 5 degrees Celsius for fridges, and 60 degrees Celsius for ovens and bain-maries.
  • Calibrate thermometer at least once per year to ensure an accurate reading.

Personal Hygiene for all Food Handlers

Food handlers have a responsibility to ensure their personal hygiene does not make food unsafe in any way. Practising correct hygiene techniques also shows customers that their wellbeing has been considered and may encourage business. Correct hygiene techniques include:

  • Tying long hair back and wearing a hair net to prevent hair getting into food.
  • Keeping fingernails clean and trimmed with no nail polish.
  • Moving away from food if you need to cough or sneeze, washing hands with soap and warm water, and drying with paper towel before handling food again.
  • Removing jewellery and your watch as these can harbour bacteria.
  • Ensuring your hands are washed before working with food, after handing raw food, and after visiting the toilet.

Displaying and Serving Food

Food must be displayed and served in a manner that will keep it safe for consumption. Food poisoning bacteria can grow in ready-to-eat food if cross-contamination occurs or correct temperature is not maintained. Avoid serving unsafe foods by:

  • Using clean equipment, utensils and cloths that have been sanitised.
  • Covering food at all times to prevent insect contamination.
  • Wearing gloves and using tongs and other utensils as much as possible when serving food.
  • Keeping warmed/hot food above 60 degrees Celsius in ovens or bain-maries.
  • Keeping food cold by refrigerating at 5 degree Celsius in fridges.
  • Keeping food frozen at minus 15 degrees Celsius or less.

Food Transportation

Transportation of food between businesses or to events must be carefully undertaken. To aim to keep food as safe as possible:

  • Any vehicle used to transport non-packaged food must be equipped with a lidded, sealed container with impervious interior surfaces that can be kept clean.
  • All food transported must be protected from contamination or spoilage.
  • If transporting potentially hazardous food such as milk products, eggs, meat, poultry, fish or other food capable of food poisoning, it is recommended that food is placed in an ice-filled esky or other insulated container.