Te whakamana pakihi hoko kai

Registering a food business

If you make or sell food or you're opening a new food business or taking over an existing one, you need to make sure your business meets all the requirements.

If you work in the food industry you have a responsibility to make sure that all food that's bought or sold is safe and suitable to eat.

The Food Act 2014 ensures the responsibilities and requirements are being met by food businesses.

On this page

Application for food registration

Once you know which risk based measure suits your food business, as guided on MPI's website
You can apply for registration.

Your application needs to include the following before it can be processed.

  • The correct fee - see our fees and charges
  • Scope of Operations form - these are on MPI's website, or print the document you get from My Food Rules page
  • Site plan of the food business
  • Certificate of incorporation if you're a company
  • Signed verification agreement. If you're employing a third party verifier for your National programme business, confirmation from the verifier that you've engaged them.

If your application is incomplete, we will not be able to process your registration.

You can lodge your completed application by emailing it to food@gdc.govt.nz or at our customer service centres.

If you would like to speak to staff about your application, please phone 0800 653 800 or email food@gdc.govt.nz to make an appointment.

You can expect to be booked for verification within 6-8 weeks of registration. Staff will contact you to arrange an appointment. Please note, there is a separate charge for the verification.

Fees for new registration

Processing registration of MPI issued template food control plan or national programme.

Description Fees
Fixed fee $349
Multi site business - extra fee per additional site $165
Per hour for every extra hour of process time $185

You may also need to talk with staff at Council

If you're proposing a new food business, here's a guide to who you need to speak to in Council first.

Resource consent duty planner - about compatibility with Council’s district plan. 
Building consent - for Building Act requirements, including plumbing, changing building use or structural changes. 
Trade waste - a requirement for most food businesses. 
Environmental health - about the Food Act requirements, mobile food businesses, serving or selling alcohol.

Application forms

Additional information

Depending on the type and size of your food business, you will need a Food Control Plan or National Programme.

For all the information you need to know about starting and operating a food business, visit the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) website My Food Rules

Getting verified

All food businesses need to be verified, to ensure their food is safe and suitable.

Verification is required to confirm the food business is following the food control plan or operating to the standards of the national programme guidance. It checks that you're following good food safety practices and keeping the required records.

You can devise your own method of keeping records or you can choose to download and use MPI's record blanks for food service and food retails

How often your verification is required will depend if you're a high or low risk business. It also depends on how well you manage food safety. If you're doing well, you will be checked less frequently.

Verification is charged at an hourly rate, it includes time spent on preparation, the verification and reporting. The cost of verification depends on the scope and complexity of the business and how well the business is operating to their food control plan or to the national programme requirements.

Gisborne District Council is a recognised verification agency. We can verify food control plan businesses and the majority of national programme businesses operating in the district. You will need to engage an external verifier if we can't verify your business.

If you operate a food control plan you must use Council as your verifier.

If you operate a national programme business you can choose to use Council or any other recognised third party verification agency.

Information about verification, frequency or to find a verifier, go to Ministry for Primary Industries website.

If you would like to engage Council to act as your verifier, complete the Verification Agreement.

Gisborne District Council is a verification agency offering verification services to food businesses. In the delivery of these services, the impartiality and integrity of staff are central to the maintenance of good governance and confidence in this public service.

In offering these Food Act services Gisborne District Council and staff act within principles of fairness and impartiality. Staff perform their duties honestly and impartially, and avoid situations which might compromise their integrity or otherwise lead to conflicts of interest.

Fees for verification

Charges include time spent on preparation, verification, reporting, scheduling and administration.

There may be additional charges for follow up, corrective actions or revisits.

Description Fees
Per hour for officer time $185
Per hour for administration time $124
Technical specialist required, per hour - at cost at cost
Overdue Corrective Action Follow up - charges include time spent on email, phone calls, site visits, assessment, outcome changes and administration, per hour $185

Renew your registration before it expires

Depending on your risk based measure, you will need to renew your registration annually or every 2 years.

We send reminders to re-register, but ultimately, it's the business owner's responsibility to ensure registration is renewed before it expires.

The penalties under the Food Act 2014 are significant if you fail to renew your registration before it expires.

You will also need to apply for a new registration, start again with verification frequency, which means increased costs and you may be issued a $450 infringement fine.

Please make sure you contact us to update your records, if you change any important details such as your company name or contact details.

Fees for renewal

Processing annual renewal of existing  registration.

Description Fees
Fixed fee $209
Multi site business - extra fee per additional site $93
Per hour for every extra hour of process time $185

Fees for amendment to registration

Processing amendment to registered risk based measure.

Description Fees
Fixed fee - significant amendment means a change in the risk based measure $201
Fixed fee - minor amendment means a change to registration or scope details $124
Per hour for every extra hour of process time $121