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Food safety licences for Grey Lynn Park Festival

AUCKLAND CITY COUNCIL

MEDIA RELEASE

15 November 2006

Food safety licences required for Grey Lynn Park Festival

Auckland City is urging food stall operators at this weekend’s Grey Lynn Park Festival to ensure that their food practices are safe and hygienic by applying for food stall licences.

The council informed the festival’s organisers in September that all food stalls would need to be licensed to ensure they comply with food hygiene regulations.

To date, none of the estimated 80 food stall operators at the festival nor the event organiser have applied for the necessary licences.

Auckland City’s environmental health team leader, Carole Simpson, says the food stall holders need to act now.

“In the interest of public safety, I’d urge the food stall holders and the event organisers to contact us before the festival on Saturday to sort out this issue,” Ms Simpson says.

“A food stall licence means that those selling food have had some basic training in food safety and hygiene and have been checked by the council to ensure they use good food handling practices.

“The council takes food safety and hygiene very seriously and the licence system is in place to ensure that those selling food have an understanding of the things they need to do to prevent food poisoning.”

Ms Simpson says a food stall licence costs only $22 and is issued for the day food is being sold at any special event. Anyone organising a large-scale event where there food is served needs food stall licences.

She says repeated efforts to contact the festival organiser have proved fruitless.

“We really want to work with the event organisers to ensure that licences are issued. We will be on site on Saturday and if we find stalls selling food in unsafe and unhygienic conditions, then we will have to close them down in the interest of public health.

“This is a festival and we want people to get out there and enjoy themselves and celebrate their neighbourhood. That’s why we’re urging everyone involved to address this issue now.”

The council is willing to meet with the event organisers and food stall owners outside of business hours between now and Saturday to ensure that the appropriate licences are issued.

ENDS

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