Food Control Plans

This page explains how to set up a Food Control Plan under the Food Act 2014, and provides contact details for Environmental Health Officers for advice and assistance.

What is a Food Control Plan?

A Food Control Plan is a set of written procedures and records that demonstrate you are making safe food. The Food Act 2014 requires some businesses to operate under a Food Control Plan. There are some templates to help you develop the procedures and keep records.

The templates currently available are for food service and food retail businesses such as cafes, restaurants, mobile food vans, stalls, shops, butchers, bakeries, delis etc. If there is no template available to cover your activities you may have to develop your own custom plan.

When do I Need to Register a Food Control Plan?

The new Food Act came into force on 1 March 2016. New businesses that start or change hands after 1 March 2016 will have to register a Food Control Plan before they begin trading.

Existing food service businesses that have on-licences need to apply to register their Food Control Plan by 31 March 2017.

Other food service businesses that dont hold on-licences will need to register their Food Control Plan by 31 March 2018.

When your current Food Premises Certificate expires we will encourage you to change over to the new Act and register a Food Control Plan.

How do I Obtain a Copy of the Food Control Plan?

There is a template Food Control Plan available for Service businesses such as cafes, restaurants and mobile food vans, and Retailers like groceries, dairies, butchers and bakers. It can be downloaded free of charge from the Ministry for Primary Industries website and you can print your own copy.

If you would like to purchase a printed version for $40 please complete the request document attached and submit this to your local office or by email to

How do I Register my Food Control Plan?

Once you have filled in your Food Control Plan and started working with it you can apply to register the plan. Fill in the attached registration form and the scope of operations form and submit it to your local office with the fee. We will arrange an appointment to visit you and check that you have filled it out correctly and your premises is suitable. If it is approved we will issue a registration certificate.

Assistance for Food Service & Retail Businesses with the Food Control Plan

The template Food Control Plan is designed for you to fill in yourself by working through each page and tailoring it to your business by ticking the option boxes or filling in information where necessary.

If you need assistance with some pages please contact us on 03 5438400 or by email

If you would like to get a group of other businesses together we can come and talk to you and you can help each other through the transition. 

Verification of Template Food Control Plans

Verification is another word for an inspection or audit. If you register a template Food Control Plan you will receive regular verifications from Council's Environmental Health Officers. Verifications will be conducted every 12 months to start with, but if the outcome is unacceptable we will visit more often. If two consecutive verification outcomes are acceptable we may visit less often (up to 18 months between verifications).  You will need to pay for each verification, which may be invoiced seperately from the registration fees.

Amendments or Changes to a Food Control Plan

To make a significant amendment like changing premises, or notify a change like changing your contact details, please complete this form and return it to us.

Food Control Plans for Other Types of Food Business

The only template Food Control Plan currently available is for food service and retail businesses such as cafes, restaurants, mobile food businesses, dairies, bakeries and butchers etc.  Businesses that do not fall under the scope of the template plan will need to develop their own Custom Food Control Plan. Guidance on developing custom plans can be found on the Ministry Primary Industries website below:

For information on custom Food Control Plans visit the MPI website: