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Food regulations


NSW food businesses are regulated by the NSW Food Authority and local councils.

Food businesses must comply with the relevant parts of the Food Standards Code.

Councils and the NSW Food Authority conduct inspections of food businesses to verify compliance with the Food Standards Code.

Some food businesses are also regulated under the Food Regulation 2010, including:

  • businesses that handle or process meat
  • dairy producers, factories and vendors
  • businesses that handle seafood and shellfish
  • high-priority plant product businesses
  • food service to vulnerable persons in hospitals and aged-care facilities
  • the egg industry.

These businesses are required to hold a NSW Food Authority licence to operate. The Authority conducts regular audits and inspections of licensed businesses.

Under the Food Act 2003, all other NSW businesses that handle food for sale are required to notify the Authority of their food-handling activities.

The Authority and local councils undertake these activities so the NSW public is offered safe and correctly labelled food.

Doggy bags

Many restaurants offer customers 'doggy bags' for leftover food, but there are potential health risks if it is not stored and handled properly after leaving the restaurant.

The Food Act 2003 does not prevent restaurants from providing doggy bags, however, restaurants may elect not to provide this service and customers can take their own container (doggy bag) to take food home.

It's the responsibility of the consumer to store and handle food taken away from the restaurant safely to minimise the risk of food poisoning.


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