Key messages

  • The Victorian Food Act 1984 controls the sale of food in Victoria.
  • Local government and the Department of Health & Human Services administer the Act.
  • A key object of the Food Act is to ensure that all food sold in Victoria is safe to eat.

The Food Act 1984 is the key legislation that controls the sale of food in Victoria.

Local councils and the Department of Health & Human Services administer the Act. Under the Act, food business owners are legally responsible for ensuring that food sold to customers is safe and suitable to eat.

The purpose of the Act is to ensure that food for sale in Victoria is both safe and suitable for human consumption. It does this by:

  • setting out offences for breaches of the food laws and the applicable penalties and defences
  • providing the means through which the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code is applied as the law in Victoria
  • establishing a food premises classification system and enforcement powers, including emergency powers where there are immediate threats to public health
  • providing the means through which municipal councils register food businesses as defined by the Act.