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Auckland Council

Why we have food grades

​Why we have food grades

Food grade certificates give food outlet customers assurance that the food that they are buying is safe and suitable to eat. They also give a quick and simple indication of how well the outlet has met its responsibilities quality and hygiene under the Food Act 2014.

eatsafe Auckland

Our food grading system is called eatsafe Auckland and will be in place until a pilot grading system is introduced by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI).

There is a three-year transition period to allow time for food outlets across the region to change over and comply with the new requirements of the Food Act 2014. This will run until 2019, so not every outlet will display an eatsafe Auckland certificate right away.

Until an eatsafe Auckland certificate is issued, food outlets must continue to display the blue certificate, issued under the Food Hygiene Regulations 1974.

What the eatsafe Auckland grades mean

The grade on the certificate is based on the food outlet's compliance to food safety, quality and hygiene standards your food outlet has obtained, including:

  • process control

  • environmental control

  • food safety behaviour

  • confidence in management

  • compliance history.

A: Excellent

Scored between 91-100 per cent.

These businesses provide the highest level of confidence that they manage a food control plan, our 4 C’s of Cook, Clean, Chill and Conduct and consistently produce safe and suitable food.

Minor issues like documentation may impact the score below 100 per cent.

B: Good

Scored between 61-90 per cent.

These businesses provide a good level of confidence that they manage a food control plan, our 4 C’s of Cook, Clean, Chill and Conduct and produce safe and suitable food. Areas of improvement that do not directly impact food safety will have been identified, particularly around documentation and procedures, which may be improved.

C: Satisfactory

Scored between 50-60 per cent.

These businesses provide a level of confidence that they produce safe food. Multiple areas of improvement that do not directly impact food safety will have been identified, particularly around their observed practises in addition to their documentation and procedures, which may be improved.

The C-grade has been introduced to provide a distinction between businesses that meet the minimum requirements for food safety and suitability, and businesses that just fail to meet the minimum requirements and present a potential for unsafe or unsuitable to food to be produced.

D: Enforcement action

Issued to businesses where compliance or enforcement action has been undertaken in response to identified issues that are likely to result in food being unsafe or unsuitable.

E: Enforcement action

Food outlets issued a D or E grade are only permitted to trade again once we are confident they are providing safe food. They still need to display their certificate until verified as safe.

Our tip

Food outlets issued a D or E grade are only permitted to trade again once we are confident they are providing safe food. They still need to display their certificate until verified as safe.