Whether you're opening a new business or taking on an existing one, you need to make sure your business meets the relevant requirements.
This means you may need to meet with these people at Council:
- Resource Consents Planner about compatibility with Council’s district plan
- Building Consent for Building Act requirements and structural changes
- Trade Waste for grease trap requirements
- Environmental Health Officer for suitability of the Building and Food Act requirements
Check if your premises is consented
Contact our Resource Consents team to make sure the business you are proposing is permitted in the location. There may be District Plan requirements such as set operating hours or car parking provisions.
Check if your planned structural or plumbing changes require consent
If you're building a new food premises or making any structural or plumbing changes to an existing food business, you may need a building consent. Contact our Building team for more information.
Check if your business needs a grease trap
Premises have varying and specific trade waste requirements. Contact our Trade Waste team to find out more about food waste and how to dispose of it safely.
Food Act requirements
The operator must ensure that the design, construction and location of the food business enables food to be safe and suitable. This includes:
- Identifying and managing risks posed to the safety or suitability of food
- Providing enough space for producing, handling and processing food
- Providing enough space for fixtures, fittings and equipment
- Ensuring that the design of the premises enables staff, visitors and food to move safely, and to flow in a way that prevents and manages risk
- Designing the premises to provide easy access for cleaning and maintenance
- Ensuring the premises are designed, constructed and located to exclude dirt, dust, fumes, smoke and other contaminants. Ensure the premises prevent pests from entering and remaining
- Ensuring construction materials that are used aren't capable of contaminating food
The operator must also ensure that the facilities, equipment and essential services are designed, constructed, and located in a way that enables food to be safe and suitable. This includes:
- Ensuring facilities, equipment, and essential services aren't operated beyond their capacity or capability
- Water used for producing, processing, handling of food and for personal hygiene and cleaning is suitable for purpose. It must not adversely affect the safety and suitability of food
- The capacity of the water supply should be adequate for the food business
It's good operating practice for at least one person (preferably the manager) to have completed a basic food safety course.
Under the Food Act 2014 managers are responsible for training their staff. For example if you are operating under a template Food Control Plan, the day-to-day manager must be familiar with and understand all FCP procedures before training staff. The manager would then need to complete and sign a staff training record for each person who works in their business.
Do you need an alcohol licence?
If you're planning to sell and supply alcohol and/or if you're interested in operating as a BYO, you'll need to apply for an alcohol licence.
Application for a Notice of Registration
Depending on what food you make you will need to either operate under a template Food Control Plan or National Programme. Use the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) My food rules tool to work out where your food activity or business fits within the new Food Act rules.
For more information about the template Food Control Plans or National Programmes you can either go to our Food Act 2014 page or visit the MPI website.
To register and apply for a notice of registration for a template food control plan you will need to complete an application for registration - Template Food Control Plan form (PDF 1.3MB). Please note that if you operate multiple food businesses within Lower Hutt under the same risk based measure you can register all your premises using the same application.
To register and apply for a notice of registration for a national program you'll need to complete an application for registration (national programme) form (PDF 1.4MB). If you operate multiple food businesses within Lower Hutt you can register all your premises using the same application.
With your application you must include:
- a site plan
- Company Certificate (if you are a registered company)
- business proposal
- scope of operations
- letter from third party Verifier (for National Programmes only if your verifier is not Hutt City Council) or if being verified by another council
How much does it cost?
Fees vary depending on the type of food being made – please see our list of fees and charges.
How long will it take?
Processing of applications vary depending on circumstances and requirements. Your Resource Consent, Certificate of Public Use or Code of Compliance Certificate (if you've applied) will need to be issued before you can start trading.
Transfer of an existing food business
Under the new Food Act, Notices of Registration are non-transferrable. If you want to take over an existing food business you'll need to complete an application for registration.
Changes to your registration
Businesses operating a registered Food Control Plan must give written notice to their registration authority (Hutt City Council) of changes in details or significant amendments.
What are changes in detail or significant amendments?
Change in detail or significant amendments can include:
- Change in information that the applicant provided in their initial application for the Food Control Plan or National Programme registration. This could include the owner's name, trading name, business address, and changes in the types of food being made (scope of the business).
- Changes made to the procedures set out in the Food Control Plan that directly relate to achieving safe and suitable food (such as control of hazards)
- Anything that impacts the Food Control plan, such as an operator not being able to comply with the Food Control Plan and requirements of the Act
- Major alterations to facilities or equipment or change in location of your business
How to give written notice
Businesses must give written notice to Council about any change in detail or significant amendment before it occurs.
To do so, complete the change of details or significant amendments to your food business form (PDF 294KB).
If it isn't practical to notify Council before the change occurs, it must be done as soon as possible after. This must be no later than 10 working days after the change occurs.