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Auckland Council

Understanding food grades

Food grade certificates give customers assurance that the food that they are buying is safe and suitable to eat. They also show how well the outlet has met its quality and hygiene requirements 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 food safety, quality and hygiene standards.

The grade takes into account an outlet's:

  • 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, practise our four Cs of Cook, Clean, Chill and Conduct, and consistently produce safe and suitable food.

Minor issues around documentation may cause the score to fall 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, practise our four Cs of Cook, Clean, Chill and Conduct, and produce safe and suitable food.

There may be areas for improvement that do not directly impact food safety, usually around documentation and procedures.

C: Satisfactory

Scored between 50-60 per cent.

These businesses provide a level of confidence that they produce safe food.

There may be multiple areas for improvement that do not directly impact food safety, particularly around their observed practices. There could also be improvements around documentation and procedures.

We introduced the C grade 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 the potential for unsafe or unsuitable production of food.

D: Enforcement action

These businesses have been identified as having issues that are likely to result in food being unsafe or unsuitable, and action has been taken as a response.

E: Enforcement action

These businesses have had a critical issue relating to food safety, and have been closed as a result.

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 D or E certificate until they are verified as safe, and are issued a new grade.