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September 10, 2021

Food Business Guidance for Operating Under COVID-19 Alert Level 2

To allow businesses an option to re-open, there are packs of pre-evaluated procedures on COVID-19 and food safety in Alert Level 2 that can be added to a food business’s plan or programme during COVID-19 Alert Levels. These packs can be added at no registration cost and without requiring verification. These packs include procedures for:

  • takeaway and pick up;
  • delivery;
  • meal kits and repacking bulk food;
  • chilled and frozen meals.

Food businesses wanting to extend their scope to re-open in Alert Level 2, must download a pack from this web page, attach it to their Plan or Programme, and then notify their Registration Authority.

There is an extra step for businesses that want to add the pack to prepare chilled and frozen meals. Because the food safety risks are greater for these processes, these businesses need an off-site Scope Change Check interview within five (5) working days of operating to check they are managing the associated food safety risks. There is no charge to the business for this Check. For details about the COVID-19 Scope Change Process for Registration Authorities, visit the Food Safety Academy.

Safe Practice Checks for Food Businesses

All businesses permitted to operate should have a COVID-19 Safety Plan that sets out how they operate safely. For New Zealand food service, retail and manufacturing businesses, operating under the Food Act 2014, there is guidance to help keep their customers and staff safe:

This guidance provides information to help food businesses minimise the risk of COVID-19 transmission, and protect the health and safety of their staff and customers. The guidance states that businesses will be asked to show how they have implemented these procedures if a COVID-19 Safe Practice Check is undertaken at their business.

Registration renewal & verification during COVID-19

There are measures in place for Registration Authorities to legally defer registrations during the COVID-19 response. Owners/managers are asked to contact their Registration Authority if their registration renewal has been affected.

If a business is due for its food safety verification during COVID-19 Alert Levels, there is a Remote Check system of Food Act businesses as an interim measure until on-site verifications can resume. This means that Food Act verifiers can complete scheduled verifications with food businesses off-site, via a phone call or using online technology such as Skype, Zoom, Teams or another live-streaming app both parties can access.

For more information 

For latest updates for food businesses under COVID-19, please refer to: