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Receiving food

If you’re a food business, it’s important to only accept delivery of food you are sure is safe and suitable.

What are the requirements?

Under Standard 3.2.2 - Food Safety Practices and General Requirements, food businesses must do everything they can to make sure they only receive food that is safe and suitable.

This generally means the food is delivered:

  • from a known supplier
  • protected from contamination, and
  • at a safe temperature.

Reduce your risk

  • make sure you can identify all food that is delivered and you know the supplier’s name and address
  • ask your suppliers to protect food from contamination (e.g. in food-safe packaging)
  • make sure someone is on-site to inspect food as it is delivered
  • check delivered food is properly covered or packaged
  • check there is no mould, insects, droppings or foreign objects (like glass or metal) in the food
  • check the ‘Use by’ date of items has not passed
  • if the food is potentially hazardous, check it is delivered at the correct temperature.

Potentially hazardous food

  • Formally agree with your delivery business what temperature food will be delivered at, or a safe time period.
  • Check frozen food is delivered frozen hard.
  • Check chilled food is delivered at 5°C or colder.
  • Check hot food is delivered at 60°C or hotter.
  • If you have agreed to accept food between 5°C and 60°C, check the delivery has not taken longer than the agreed time (check departure and arrival times).
  • Keep food under temperature control once you have received it.

Need more information?

Safe Food Australia is a guide to the food safety standards in Chapter 3 of the Food Standards Code. Food receipt is under Standard 3.2.2 clause 5 and potentially hazardous food is explained in Appendix 1 and 2.

Copies of the guide are available at on our website or by emailing information@foodstandards.gov.au.​

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