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FSS certificates

From 1 September 2015 to be certified as an FSS for a food premise in NSW and issued a valid certificate, a person must attain required units of competency from an approved RTO under the FSS program.

The units of competency must incorporate three key focus areas determined by the Food Authority and published on its website:

  1. safe egg handling
  2. allergen management
  3. cleaning and sanitising practices

For more information see the required units of competency on the training requirements page.

FSS recertification

FSS certificates expire 5 years from the date of issue. The expiry date is printed on each certificate. To be issued with a new FSS certificate, FSS certificate holders are required to renew their training at an approved RTO. To find an approved RTO in your area, go to the Approved training providers page.

Food businesses that have an appointed FSS holding an FSS certificate which is due to expire will need to enrol their FSS in recertification training with an RTO approved under the FSS program. FSS training consists of obtaining the required units of competency where those units have incorporated the three key focus areas, determined by the Food Authority. This is a prerequisite for the issuing of a NSW FSS certificate. Where an FSS is recertifying, under certain circumstances the RTO can take into account the applicant’s prior learning, while still providing training in the three key focus areas.

For more information, see recognition of prior learning below. Food businesses have 30 working days from the date of certificate expiry of the appointed FSS to either ensure their appointed FSS renews their training and obtains a new FSS certificate, or another FSS with a current qualification is appointed.

Recognition of prior learning

An RTO can provide a Recognition of Prior Learning for the purposes of issuing an FSS certificate if:

  • The FSS holder currently recertifying holds an FSS certificate that will expire soon, or has expired within the immediately preceding period of 90 days.

FSS holders will still need to renew their training with an approved RTO in the key focus areas as part of the RPL process. RTOs will determine how to deliver this training.

The NSW Food Authority will assess and issue an FSS certificate to an individual who has attained all of the required units from any RTO in Australia when completed as part of a vocational qualification (eg Cert IV Commercial Cookery) within 5 years from the date of request. The NSW Food Authority cannot renew expired certificates.

Replacing certificates

If the contact details of an FSS change (e.g. name), the FSS should contact the RTO that issued the original FSS certificate to request a replacement certificate with the new details.

The FSS will need to find out from the RTO what documentation must be submitted before a certificate is reissued.

If an FSS certificate is lost or damaged, the RTO that issued the certificate will be able to issue a replacement. If the RTO that issued the certificate has ceased to operate or is no longer approved under the FSS program, then the Food Authority is able to issue a replacement certificate.

Replacement certificates retain the original issue and expiry date. A FSS looking to replace an expired or soon-to-expire certificate can find relevant information on the recertification page.

It is a legal requirement that all businesses that require an FSS keep a copy of the valid, appointed FSS certificate on the premises. To replace an FSS certificate:

Note: RTOs may charge a fee for the reissue of an FSS certificate. The cost is set by the RTO, not the Food Authority. FSS certificate requests will be processed in 10 working days.