A food control plan (FCP) is a written document that sets out what a business needs to take to keep food safe. Find out what plan you should use for your food business.

Template or custom FCP?

Many businesses can use a food control plan (FCP) template, provided by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI). Others will need to develop their own FCP (a custom FCP) or use an industry-developed template.

You'll need to register your plan each year and have a regular check (verification) to make sure your plan is being followed.

Businesses that can use a template FCP

The types of businesses that can use a template FCP include:

  • food service businesses such as restaurants, cafes, takeaways, catering, or hospital kitchens
  • food retailers that prepare or manufacture and sell food – including retail butchers, fishmongers, delis, and supermarkets
  • cheesemakers and cheesemongers
  • members of an organisation that has created its own template – approved by MPI's New Zealand Food Safety.

Businesses that will use a custom FCP

The types of businesses that will use a custom FCP include those that:

  • want to create their own unique plan tailored to their way of doing things
  • have food activities not covered by National Programmes or the templates above
  • have diverse activities and don't want to operate off multiple plans
  • manufacture high-risk foods such as fresh ready-to-eat salads, meat, poultry, fish, processed egg products, or food for vulnerable groups such as babies or the elderly.

Get your plans ready in time

In February 2017, MPI redesigned the template food control plan in consultation with businesses. The updated plan is called Simply Safe & Suitable – Food Control Plan. It's designed to be easier to use. There is also an online tool to help you select the parts you need.

Get your plans ready in time

If you're starting a new business that needs a food control plan, you must be operating under the new Food Act and have your plan in place before you start making and selling food.

If your business was already running before 1 March 2016, the transition timetable sets out when you will need to start making changes to bring your food safety practices in line with the Food Act 2014.

Existing businesses with food safety programmes

Your food safety programme (FSP) will be deemed to be a food control plan from 1 March 2016 until 28 February 2019. You have until 30 November 2018 to apply to register your business under the new Act.

Changes to a registered food control plan

If you make a change to your food control plan or the way you operate your business after the plan is registered, you need to let your registration authority know.

Unsure where you fit?

If you're not sure if your business will operate under a food control plan, MPI has developed a tool – Where Do I Fit? – to help you work it out.

Who to contact

If you have questions about food control plans, email info@mpi.govt.nz

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