Seafood Processor

If you are processing seafood of any kind to supply to other businesses, then you require an accreditation with Safe Food Production Queensland (Safe Food). ‘Processing’ includes killing, dismembering, filleting, cutting into portions, gilling or gutting, skinning, shucking, peeling or brining of seafood. It also includes the harvesting of bivalve molluscs, depuration of shellfish or crustaceans, cooking of crustaceans (steaming or boiling), and the packing, treating or washing of seafood.

These activities are classified as Processing under the Seafood Scheme of the Food Production (Safety) Regulation 2014.

Other accreditations you may need

If you are storing seafood products under active refrigeration at a different site to your processing facility, then you will also require an accreditation with Safe Food as a Cold Store.

If you are processing seafood, but supply all of your product by retail sale for immediate consumption, then you don’t require an accreditation with Safe Food. However, you will require a license issued under the Food Act 2006 from your local council.

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Before you apply

If you intend to process seafood, you must do so in an approved facility that meets the requirements of:

If your food premise complies with these requirements and you wish to proceed with an application for accreditation, please see below for what you need to submit.

What should I submit with my application?

  • Application form

    Complete the Application form and select Processing (seafood scheme) as your activity on page 2.

  • Payment of fees

    Fees and payment details can be viewed within the application form.

  • Food Safety Program

    You must submit a Food Safety Program (FSP) with your application. A FSP documents the processes and procedures you will follow to minimise or eliminate food safety risks and ensure the food you produce is safe. This is a detailed document that covers all aspects of your business, from inputs, product descriptions and temperatures, right through to cleaning, maintenance and pest control. It involves a risk assessment to identify where any possible issues may arise, how to recognise these issues, what the acceptable limits are around each step, and what to do to rectify a food safety issue, should it occur.

    A FSP can be developed in partnership with a food safety consultant or your industry peak body. However, you are not obliged to use these.

  • Approval from local council

    You must provide written confirmation from your local council that you are permitted to undertake your proposed activities at the site from which you intend to operate.

  • Floor plan

    Please submit a floor plan of your processing facility that shows the location of:

    • cool rooms/ refrigerators
    • entry and exit points
    • staff facilities (e.g. lunchroom, toilets, etc.)
    • hand washing facilities
    • benches and equipment for processing seafood
    • drains
  • Photos

    Please submit photos of the following:

    • cool rooms & refrigerators, including temperature gauge
    • hand washing facilities, including chemicals used
    • drains and disposal system for garbage and waste water
    • all equipment that may come into contact with seafood (e.g. knives, filleting gloves, packaging machines, thermometers, etc.)

Submit your completed application to info@safefood.qld.gov.au or PO Box 221, Greenslopes, Brisbane, QLD 4120.

When to apply

Under the Food Production (Safety) Act 2000, it is unlawful to engage in certain activities relating to primary production or processing of food until you have been granted an accreditation by Safe Food. As such, you should allow adequate time for your application to be reviewed by Safe Food before you begin operating.

Your application will aim to be assessed within 14 days, although applications submitted in their entirety (with all the items outlined above) are likely to be processed faster.

Upon submission of your application, a member of our Central Assessment Team will contact you for payment (if paying by credit card). Once payment has been received, your application will be assessed, and we will contact you if we require any further information.

You will be notified in writing about the outcome of your application (approved or refused).

Temporary Accreditations

As a seafood processor, you will be undertaking activities deemed to be medium or high risk under the Food Production (Safety) Regulation 2014. As such, if your application is approved, you will be issued a temporary accreditation to start with.

A temporary accreditation is issued for a period of up to two months, prior to being considered for an open accreditation.

Under a temporary accreditation, you must have your food production system approved by Safe Food before you can begin supplying foods that pose a higher risk to consumers. Examples include ready-to-eat products like oysters and smoked seafood products. Your level of risk will be determined based on what is documented in your Food Safety Program and compared against the Food Production (Safety) Regulation 2014.

If you are issued a temporary accreditation, you will be required to submit additional technical information to demonstrate that your nominated food safety controls are effective in maintaining compliance with the requirements of the Seafood Scheme. This required information is in addition to the application process and will incur additional costs. You will be notified in writing if you are issued a temporary accreditation and what you need to supply.

For more information about temporary accreditation requirements please contact us.

Fees

Fees are based on the activities you are carrying out and are outlined in the Application form.

New applications will incur a one-time application fee that is non-refundable.

Our accreditation period runs from 1st January – 31st December*. You will therefore need to renew your accreditation on an annual basis.

For more information, please refer to our fees & charges.

*Our fees are not pro-rata.