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Food Safety

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Food Business Registration and Renewal

The Northern Territory food safety legislation takes a preventative approach to reducing food-borne illness, to enhance the Northern Territory's reputation for clean and safe foods, and assist businesses to provide food that is safe and wholesome.

The legislation requires all food businesses be registered. This registration is free and allows the Department to identify the risks of the business, provide them with information about food safety including recalls, identify sources of food borne illness, target inspections and respond to complaints more effectively.

Exceptions to registration apply to those businesses that are of a community based, one-off nature.

Application to Renew Registration of a Food Business

Please Note: The Online Application Form is currently unavailable.
Please use these hard-copy forms available below:

Food Premises Application FormUpdatedNo.

Application to Register a Food Business

May 2013.

Application to Renew Registration of a Food Business (Adobe PDF document - 183KB)

May 2013.

For Food Business applicants on private water supplies, please read the following:

Food Business Water Samples (Adobe PDF document - 35KB)

Mar 2013415

 Food Safety Standards

The NT Food Act adopts the national Food Safety Standards, which set down the rules for how food must be handled and how premises and equipment must be maintained to uphold food safety. These standards are:

  • Standard 3.1.1 Interpretation and Application
  • Standard 3.2.1 Food Safety Programs
  • Standard 3.2.2 Food Safety Practices and General Requirements
  • Standard 3.2.3 Premises and Equipment
  • Standard 3.3.1 Food Safety Programs for Food Service to Vulnerable Persons

These Food Safety Standards and more can be found at Food Standards Australia New Zealand website.

Food Safety for Vulnerable Populations

The NT adopts the Australian and New Zealand Food Standards Code by reference without amendment, therefore Standard 3.3.1 Food Safety Programs for Vulnerable Populations has in effect come into force in the Northern Territory. Whilst this is the case, the Department of Health and Families is still in the process of developing regulations under its head legislation, the Food Act 2004, to allow for the audit infrastructure needed to support the standard. At this stage organisations are not being audited against the Standard by our Department, however we are encouraging development of programs that comply with 3.3.1 ahead of the legislation necessary for the NT to implement the audit system.

Templates to develop a food safety program can be found at SA Department of Health Food Safety Programs

If you have any questions regarding the food safety legislation, please contact either your local Environmental Health Officer or email the program at [click here to send email]

Food Labelling

This is a guide to the labelling requirements of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code ("the Code") that has been adopted into food law by all States and Territories.

This guide is designed to help small businesses prepare basic food labels for retail sale. 

Food Surveillance

One of the key roles of the Environmental Health Branch is monitoring food safety. A comprehensive monitoring and surveillance program is in place, which includes, compliance checking of premises and a food-sampling program.

The Branch works collaboratively with other jurisdictions and Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) in developing priority-sampling plans. Surveys in which the NT has participated in recently include:

  • Tthe detection of illegal food colourings in spices
  • Microbiological quality of sushi
  • Sulphur dioxide in mince meat
  • Microbiological quality of ready to eat market food.

The NT regularly participates in the Australian Total Diet Survey (ATDS). The ATDS is Australia's most comprehensive assessment of consumer's dietary exposure to pesticide residues, contaminants and other substances.

Dietary Advice for Pregnant Women


Listeria in Foodhttp://www.foodstandards.gov.au/consumerinformation/listeria/
Mercury in Fishhttp://www.foodstandards.gov.au/consumerinformation/mercuryinfish.cfm

Fact Sheets - Food Safety

Information for Food Handlers (Adobe PDF document - 47KB)May 2004200
Skills and Knowledge (Adobe PDF document - 39KB)May 2004201
Sausage Sizzles and Barbeques (Adobe PDF document - 35KB)Jun 2006202
Doggy Bags (Adobe PDF document - 65KB)Sep 2008203
Starting a Food Business (Adobe PDF document - 29KB)Jun 2006204
Temperature Control (Adobe PDF document - 44KB)May 2004205
Cleaning and Sanitising (Adobe PDF document - 164KB)Jun 2006206
Pest Control (Adobe PDF document - 25KB)Jun 2006207
Food Safety Legislation (Adobe PDF document - 28KB)Nov 2008208
Use of Thermometers (Adobe PDF document - 309KB)Jun 2006209
Hazardous Foods, Cooling and Reheating (Adobe PDF document - 55KB)Jun 2006210
Defrosting (Adobe PDF document - 32KB)Jun 2006211
Temperature Control - 2 to 4 hour guide (Adobe PDF document - 28KB)Jun 2006212
Transporting Food (Adobe PDF document - 34KB)Jun 2006213
Hand Washing (Adobe PDF document - 280KB)Jun 2006214
Best Before & Use By explained (Adobe PDF document - 38KB)Jun 2006215
Stacking the refrigerator (Adobe PDF document - 29KB)Jun 2006216
Purchasing an existing food premises (Adobe PDF document - 28KB)Jun 2006217
Charities Community Groups and Volunteers (Adobe PDF document - 34KB)Jan 2009218
Temperature Log Book (Adobe PDF document - 34KB)Mar 2009


Mobile Food Vehicles (Adobe PDF document - 33KB)Mar 2009220
Food Safety for Tour Operators (Adobe PDF document - 69KB)Apr 2009221
Mercury in Fish (Adobe PDF document - 41KB)Mar 2013223
Cut Fruit, Fruit Juices and Smoothies (Adobe PDF document - 35KB)Nov 2013225
Egg Safety for Businesses (Adobe PDF document - 42KB)Mar 2014226
Egg Safety for Consumers (Adobe PDF document - 106KB)Mar 2014227