Key messages

  • Food safety auditors must be qualified and department approved.
  • Food safety auditors check that food businesses have an adequate food safety program and are complying with that program.

Independent, private food safety auditors must meet the requirements of the competency-based National Food Safety Auditor Scheme level 4. This can be achieved by either:

  • obtaining certification from Exemplar Global under their competency-based national food safety auditor certification
  • providing all of the relevant documentation for the National Food Safety Auditor Scheme level 4 to the department.

Only after being approved by the department can they audit food premises under the Food Act 1984.

Food safety auditors must audit a food business to check that the business:

  • has an adequate food safety program
  • is complying with its food safety program, the Food Act and applicable standards.

Following the audit, providing the business is fully complying, the auditor must provide an audit certificate to the council within 14 days of giving the certificate to the business. That certificate must be one of:

  • a certificate of compliance
  • a certificate detailing that corrective actions have been taken to address deficiencies or any outstanding matters, if an audit has revealed noncompliances at the premises.

Should the auditor identify any deficiencies that may lead to a serious risk of food being sold or prepared that is unsafe or unsuitable, then the auditor must inform the council and the department’s Food Safety Unit as soon as practicable.

The proprietor of the premises must provide the council with a copy of any report prepared by the auditor, if requested by the council.

Council auditors

In addition to independent private auditors, council officers are also able to audit food safety programs on behalf of their councils, provided that:

  • the officers are approved auditors under the Food Act 1984
  • the council has decided that it will offer audit services to food premises.

Approved auditors carry identification to confirm that they have the required qualifications and approval.

Food safety auditor certification

Prospective auditors should familiarise themselves with the requirements contained in the competency-based National Food Safety Auditor Scheme level 4, before forwarding an application form to the department.

Refer to the appropriate application form for further information regarding application requirements.

To apply for approval to be a food safety auditor under the Food Act, please contact the Food Safety Unit.

Contact details