Food Safety Supervisor Requirements
Page content: Overview | What is a food safety supervisor? | Step 1. Choosing the right food safety supervisor for your business | Step 2: Knowing the food sector that your business belongs to | Step 3: Helping your food safety supervisor obtain a Statement of Attainment for their food safety skills and knowledge | Step 4. How much training is required? | Step 5: Finding the right training course for your food safety supervisor | Frequently asked questions | Get help from Business Victoria
All food business owners in Victoria must ensure their staff members have the skills and knowledge required to safely handle food in their roles. Many food businesses will need to nominate a food safety supervisor to make sure of this.
Local councils classify all food businesses within their municipal districts depending upon the risk involved in each business’s food handling activities. The classification system applies different requirements to food premises based upon the risk of their food activities.
Most class 1 and class 2 food premises require a food safety supervisor. The exceptions are:
- food premises that use a Quality Assurance (QA) Food Safety Program prepared under a declared QA code, if the program includes competency based or accredited training for its staff
- food events of one to two days duration run by class 2 community groups where the majority of the workforce are volunteers.
Because local council classifies every food business on a case-by-case basis, different businesses with the same owner, or different premises belonging to the same franchise or chain, may be classed differently depending upon the highest risk activity undertaken at each premises. While one business, franchise or chain may need a food safety supervisor, another may not. Local council will advise each individual business premises of its class and food safety supervisor requirements.
A food safety supervisor is someone who:
- knows how to recognise, prevent and alleviate food handling hazards at your premises;
- has a Statement of Attainment that shows the required food safety competencies from a Registered Training Organisation (RTO);
- has the ability and authority to supervise other people handling food at the premises and ensure that food handling is done safely.
The following section provides a step-by-step guide to whether your business needs a food safety supervisor, and if so, how to ensure they meet your businesses requirements. Your local council determines the class of your food safety business which in turn determines your food safety supervisor needs. This fact sheet also provides information about food safety supervisor requirements and training.
Food Safety Supervisor Factsheet September 2013
Food Safety Supervisor Factsheet December 2013 - Arabic
Food Safety Supervisor Factsheet December 2013 - Simplified Chinese
Food Safety Supervisor Factsheet December 2013 - Vietnamese
Class 3 and class 4 food premises do not need a food safety supervisor. They must however ensure that staff members have the skills and knowledge they need to safely handle food in their work roles.
All premises (businesses and community groups) that sell food are legally required to ensure that it is safe for human consumption, regardless of the premises food safety supervisor requirements.
It is important to choose your food safety supervisor carefully. Your food safety supervisor can be the owner, an employee or a person external to the business, providing they are able meet the requirements of a food safety supervisor prescribed in the Food Act.
Your businesses food safety supervisor is someone who:
- knows how to recognise, prevent and alleviate the hazards associated with food handling at your premises
- has a Statement of Attainment that shows the required food safety competencies from a Registered Training Organisation (RTO)
- has the ability and authority to supervise other people handling food at your premises and ensure that food handling is done safely.
It is important to choose someone who can do all of the things listed above.
You should ensure that your food safety supervisor has everything they need to perform the role at your business. This could mean that:
- it is mentioned in their job description
- they know what their role is and what their responsibilities are
- they have relevant and appropriate training
- they are allocated time in their day to undertake food safety supervisor tasks
- they are able to supervise other staff and ensure staff are aware who the food safety supervisor is; and
- they know what to do if there are any food safety issues in your business.
The food safety supervisor doesn't have to be on the premises at all times. However they must be able to know how food is being handled when they are not on the premises. Similarly, this applies to businesses that operate across a number of shifts, or when a person from outside the business is the food safety supervisor.
The food sector your business falls into will guide which training courses or course units your food safety supervisor needs to complete. This is because training requirements need to match your business type to ensure that the training is relevant to your business.
Check Table 1 below. Then contact the health unit at your local council to confirm which food sector your business falls into and the training your food safety supervisor needs to complete.
Table 1 Food sectors and minimum competency standards
|Food Sector||Minimum competency standard|
Businesses such as food product manufacturers including flour mills, canneries, packers, bakers, breweries and wineries.
FDFFS2001A ‘Implement the food safety program and procedures’
Businesses such as supermarkets, convenience stores, grocers, and delicatessens.
|SIRRFSA001A 'Apply retail food safety practices'
Use both units from the Hospitality
| Take away and fast food businesses can be considered either retail or hospitality food businesses.
|| Previous course code:
WRRLP6C 'Apply retail food safety practices'
Take away and fast food businesses can be considered either retail or hospitality food businesses.
SITXFSA101 ‘Use hygienic practices for food safety’
Businesses such as hospitals.
HLTFS207C 'Follow basic food safety practices'
Previous course codes:
Businesses such as childcare centres, nursing homes, hostels, and Meals on Wheels services.
|Use all three units from the Health sector above.|
|Transport and Distribution
Businesses such as warehouses.
|Use relevant units from other sectors.|
Step 3: Helping your food safety supervisor obtain a Statement of Attainment for their food safety skills and knowledge
A food safety supervisor can obtain a Statement of Attainment in two ways:
- attend a training course -this may be classroom or workplace based, computer based or a combination;
- have previously completed training and/or work experience recognised against the required competency standard by a Registered Training Organisation (RTO).
Some competencies are transferable from one sector to the other. For example, a competency acquired in the Hospitality sector is transferable to the Retail sector and vice versa.
Training courses and Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) are organised through a RTO.
The minimum competency standards for a food safety supervisor are listed in Table 1 above (see Step 3). These competencies depend upon the type of food business the food safety supervisor is supervising. There is no Victorian requirement for a food safety supervisor to undertake training beyond the minimum competencies listed in Table 1, however there may be industry or organisation based standards in addition to the Victorian Food Act requirements.
To find the right course for your food safety supervisor you need to:
- know the units your food safety supervisor needs to complete (Check Table 1 (Step 3 above) and contact the health unit at your local council to confirm before they commence training
- contact Registered Training Organisation (RTO) to see if they offer the required training
Many RTOs in Victoria offer food safety training at different times to suit business needs. Some food safety training is also offered in languages other than English.
Search for training courses online:
Search for a RTO by:
- looking in the Melbourne Yellow Pages under ‘Education and Training’ or go to the Yellow Pages website
- contacting your industry association for information
- conducting an internet search using the course code and your location e.g. SITXFSA201 Bendigo
Or clicking on the links in the following table to the National Training Register:
|Food Processing||Training Packages (FDF10) Food Processing Industry|
|Retail||Training Package (SIR07) Retail Services|
|Hospitality||Training Packages (SIT12) Tourism, Hospitality and Events|
|Health||Training Packages (HLT07) Health|
|Community Services||Training Packages (HLT07) Health|
|Transport and Distribution||Use relevant links from other sectors.|
Other useful links are:
For more information:
- contact your local council health department
- Food Safety Hotline 1300 364 352
View a list of Food Safety Supervisor - Frequently Asked Questions.
Access a range of online tools and information to help you start up and run your food business. Begin with Step-By-Step: Starting a Food Business, an interactive guide, and register for a free Business Victoria account, available on the Business Victoria website.
For more details go to the Business Victoria website or call the Victorian Business Line 13 22 15.