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A lot of interest in new Food Act workshops

A lot of interest in new Food Act workshops

Ruapehu District Council joined with the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) to run a series of successful workshops in Taumarunui (25 July) and Ohakune (26 July) last week for local businesses impacted by the new Food Act 2014 (the Act).

Around 50 people attended both workshops to find out what the new law means for their business or organisation.

Ruapehu Environmental Health Officer Phoebe Harrison said that in addition to Ruapehu’s large hospitality and producer sectors the new Act affects anyone else involved in the selling, making or transportation of food.

“This means that some areas involved in the food supply chain that have previously fallen through the cracks, such as school canteens, hostels, people making preserves and baking at home to sell now all need to meet the new requirements,” she said.

“The workshops highlighted that more work was required on how ski lodges will fit into the new Act, with some using contractors to prepare meals, some employing chefs and some allowing members to prepare their own food.”

“MPI was able to take away a list of scenarios from the workshops regarding the lodges that will be used to help prepare some guidance on how to proceed.”

Ms. Harrison said council is happy that so many businesses took advantage of MPI being at the workshops and came along to have their questions answered directly from the experts.

“Businesses who attended now understand exactly where they fit in under the new regulations and whether they operate under a food control plan or a national programme.”

“Because the Act is not a one-size-fits-all approach and aims to regulate businesses according to risk there has been some confusion about where individual businesses fit in.”

“Anyone who was unable to come along and has outstanding questions should call the Environmental Health team here at council so we can assist.”

“We will also be running further workshops later in the year.”


*End*

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