Starting a New Food Business

1. Development approval

Starting a food business or renovating an existing shop?

For all new food premises, and any existing food business that you want to renovate, development consent is required before you start any building work or renovations.

If you are not carrying out any building works or renovations, other works, activities or change of use that may require prior approval then you just need to register your business.

Starting a Home Business?

Home-based businesses that undertake the manufacture of food products is not exempt development. In this regard, the prior development consent is required. Development Consent or a Complying Development Certificate can be applied for with an application to Council or from an Accredited Certifier.

2. Leasing a Food Shop

Site considerations

  • Is the site suitable?
  • Is there already a Development Consent in place to use the site as a food business?
  • Is the site large enough for all the activities, equipment and facilities that will be required?

Once a suitable site is found, you may need to apply for development consent.

Mechanical ventilation

  • Do you require a mechanical ventilation system, or does one currently exist?
  • If there is an existing ventilation system, is it adequate?

3. Standards for food premises and equipment

Food premises must comply with Food Safety Standards 3.2.3 of the Food Standards Code.

The Food premises Design, construction and fit-out guide provides users with minimum requirements and best practice options for design and construction of food premises that will meet the standards.

Depending on the nature of your food business, you may require a grease trap to be installed and a trade waste permit from Sydney Water.

Before you start operating, you can request Council carry out a food premises fitout inspection to ensure the premises comply with the relevant standards – a $265 fee must be paid before the inspection.

Food Safety Supervisor

The Food Act 2003 (NSW) requires some hospitality and retail food businesses to appoint at least one trained Food Safety Supervisor (FSS). The FSS program was established to help reduce foodborne illness in NSW

For more information about Food Safety Supervisors, contact Council’s Environmental Health Officers on 9777 1000 or the visit the NSW Food Authority website.