21 December 2011

Changed food safety arrangement for the retail and food service sectors – COAG Decision Regulation Impact Statement – Legislative and Governance Forum on Food Regulation

On 9 December 2011, the Legislative and Governance Forum on Food Regulation (which has replaced the former Australia and New Zealand Food Regulation Ministerial Council) announced that it had agreed to put in place a new food safety management Policy Guideline for the retail and food service sectors. The Policy Guideline is intended to guide Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) should it decide to make a new standard on food safety management in the retail and food service sector and also guide consistent implementation by the States and Territories.

The new Policy Guideline, which replaces the 2003 version of the Policy Guideline, gives FSANZ and State and Territory regulators a more comprehensive range of risk management tools for food safety management in the retail and food service sectors. As a result, regulators can potentially apply more appropriately targeted and cost-effective responses to food safety risks. The implementation of the 2003 Policy Guideline as it applies to other food industry sectors has been completed and is not changing.

A Regulation Impact Statement (RIS) was prepared by officials of the Food Regulation Standing Committee (FRSC) to inform the decision of Forum Ministers. As FSANZ would need to develop detailed food safety management requirements as part of making a food standard, the RIS provides a high-level indicative assessment of likely impacts.

The RIS was assessed as adequate by the Office of Best Practice Regulation. An adequate Consultation RIS was prepared by the FRSC working group and released in October 2010.


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