Unit of competency details

SITXFSA001A - Implement food safety procedures (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to SITXFSA201 - Participate in safe food handling practicesPrerequisite removed. Minor adjustments to expression of content to streamline and improve unit. Change to title for greater consistency across Training Package. Wording adjusted to better reflect regulatory requirements. 17/Jan/2013
Supersedes THHBCC11B - Implement food safety procedures 04/May/2009

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 05/May/2009

Training packages that include this unit

Qualifications that include this unit

CodeSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Code columnTitleSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Title columnRelease
SIT30707 - Certificate III in HospitalityCertificate III in Hospitality
SIT40307 - Certificate IV in HospitalityCertificate IV in Hospitality
SIT30907 - Certificate III in Hospitality (Asian Cookery)Certificate III in Hospitality (Asian Cookery)
SIT40407 - Certificate IV in Hospitality (Commercial Cookery)Certificate IV in Hospitality (Commercial Cookery)
SIT20407 - Certificate II in Hospitality (Asian Cookery)Certificate II in Hospitality (Asian Cookery)
HLT21212 - Certificate II in Health Support ServicesCertificate II in Health Support Services
PSP30604 - Certificate III in Government (School Support Services)Certificate III in Government (School Support Services)1-2 
SIT40607 - Certificate IV in Hospitality (Catering Operations)Certificate IV in Hospitality (Catering Operations)
SIT30807 - Certificate III in Hospitality (Commercial Cookery)Certificate III in Hospitality (Commercial Cookery)
HLT21207 - Certificate II in Health Support ServicesCertificate II in Health Support Services
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SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110111 Food Hygiene 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110111 Food Hygiene 25/Nov/2008 
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Modification History

Not applicable.

Unit Descriptor

Unit descriptor 

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to handle food safely during the storage, preparation, display, service and disposal of food within a range of service industry operations. It requires the ability to follow predetermined procedures as outlined in an organisation food safety program.

This unit is one of three hierarchical units describing varying levels of participation in food safety processes:

  • SITXOHS002A Follow workplace hygiene procedures
  • SITXFSA001A Implement food safety procedures
  • SITXFSA002A Develop and implement a food safety program.

Food safety is nationally legislated by the Food Standards Australia New Zealand Act 1991 which provides for the operation of a statutory authority known as Food Standards Australia New Zealand.

The Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code (the Code) developed by this authority contains an individual standard for food safety practices. This unit of competency complies with the legislative requirements for food safety and safe food handling practices as outlined in the Code.

The legislative requirement for a business to comply with the national standard for food safety practices, along with training and certification requirements, differ between state and territory governments.

In some cases food handlers and especially designated food safety supervisors, may be required to formally achieve competence in implementing safe food handling practices through a registered training organisation that must use this unit as the basis for their training.

Application of the Unit

Application of the unit 

This unit has application to hospitality, commercial catering and retail venues where food is stored, prepared, displayed, served and disposed of. It applies to venues that operate a permanent or temporary kitchen or smaller food preparation area, including restaurants, cafes, clubs, hotels, attractions, events and conference venues, fast food restaurants, retail food outlets such as sandwich shops and food court outlets. It would apply to tour operators involved in the preparation and service of food at temporary sites.

Other industries will need to access industry-specific food safety units of competency.

Safe food handling practices are based on policies and procedures outlined in an organisation food safety program. The program and its procedures would normally be based on the hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP) method but this unit can apply to other food safety systems.

This unit applies to frontline operational personnel who work under supervision and guidance and operate within predefined organisational food safety procedures. This function is undertaken by a diverse range of people, such as cooks, chefs, catering staff and kitchen hands, food and beverage attendants, cafe and fast food outlet cooking crew and sales people, and owner-operators of small business catering operations or retail food outlets.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not applicable.


Prerequisite units 

This unit must be assessed after the following prerequisite unit:

  • SITXOHS002A Follow workplace hygiene procedures.

Employability Skills Information

Employability skills 

The required outcomes described in this unit of competency contain applicable facets of employability skills. The Employability Skills Summary of the qualification in which this unit is packaged will assist in identifying employability skills requirements.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the required performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised  text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge and/or the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria




Implement procedures for food safety.


Access and use the relevant documents from the organisation food safety program.


Follow all food safety policies and procedures  correctly and consistently according to organisation food safety program requirements to ensure compliance of all food handling practices.


Control all food hazards  at critical control points .


Complete any food safety monitoring  processes and complete documents as outlined in the food safety program.


Identify and report any practices that are inconsistent with the food safety program.


Take any corrective actions within scope of job responsibility for incidents where food hazards are found not to be under control .


Store food safely.


Select food storage conditions appropriate to the specific food type .


Store food in the appropriate environmental conditions so that it is protected from contamination and to ensure its freshness, quality and appearance.


Store food at appropriately controlled temperatures and ensure that any frozen items remain frozen during storage.


Prepare food safely.


Prepare food in a safe manner to ensure that it is protected from contamination.


Use cooling and heating processes that will not adversely affect the microbiological safety of the food.


Monitor temperature of food throughout the preparation process to achieve microbiological safety of the food at all times.


Ensure the safety of food prepared , served and sold to customers under other conditions .


Provide safe single use items.


Store, display and provide single use items so that they are protected from damage and contamination.


Do not re-use items intended for single use .


Maintain a clean environment.


Clean and sanitise equipment, surfaces and utensils used during food handling process.


Use appropriate containers and do not allow the accumulation of garbage and recycled matter.


Identify and report any equipment that requires cleaning or maintenance to ensure its cleanliness and safe operation .


Dispose of any chipped, broken or cracked eating, drinking or food handling utensils or report these if disposal is outside scope of responsibility.


Take measures within scope of responsibility to ensure food handling areas are free from animals and pests and report any incidents of animal or pest infestation.


Dispose of food safely.


Mark and keep separate from other foodstuffs any food identified for disposal  until disposal is complete.


Dispose of food promptly to ensure no cross-contamination of other foodstuffs.

Required Skills and Knowledge


This section describes the essential skills and knowledge and their level, required for this unit.

The following skills must be assessed as part of this unit:

  • operation of equipment, especially how to calibrate, use and clean a temperature probe and how to identify faults
  • literacy skills to read and interpret relevant components of organisation food safety program, including policies, procedures and flow charts that identify critical control points and to complete basic documentation relating to monitoring food safety
  • numeracy skills to take and record temperatures and to calculate times.

The following knowledge must be assessed as part of this unit:

  • basic understanding of federal, and state or territory food safety legislative compliance requirements, contents of national codes and standards that underpin regulatory requirements, and local government food safety regulations and inspection regimes
  • working knowledge of relevant components of the organisation food safety program, especially policies, procedures, product specifications and the use of any monitoring documents
  • consequences of failure to observe food safety policies and procedures
  • basic understanding of HACCP principles, procedures and processes
  • critical control points for the specific food production system and the predetermined methods of control, especially time and temperature controls used in the storage, preparation, display, service and disposal of food
  • meaning of hazardous foods, especially as described by local legislation and national food codes
  • high risk customer groups (those who may have a higher than average risk of harm from food contamination), such as:
  • children or babies
  • pregnant women
  • aged persons
  • people with immune deficiencies or allergies
  • methods of food storage, production, display, service and disposal for the industry sector and food business, especially appropriate temperature levels for each of these processes
  • broad understanding of the main types of safety hazards and contamination that may be found in the main food types handled by the industry sector and food business
  • broad understanding of the conditions for development of microbiological contamination for the main food types handled by the industry sector and food business
  • broad understanding of the appropriate environmental conditions, including temperature controls, for the storage of the main food types handled by the industry sector and food business
  • temperature danger zone for the main food types handled by the industry sector and food business and the two-hour and four-hour rule
  • principles and methods of safe food handling
  • choice and application of cleaning, sanitising and pest control equipment and materials.

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, the range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for this Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency 

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • ability to access and interpret safe food handling procedures and consistently apply these during day-to-day food handling activities
  • knowledge of critical control points and methods of food hazard control for each critical point
  • project or work activities that show the candidate's ability to apply safe food handling practices on multiple occasions across a range of different food handling circumstances to ensure consistency in the application of food safety procedures.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure:

  • access to a fully equipped industry-realistic food preparation environment, such as a commercial kitchen, catering production line, or food preparation area of a food outlet using the full range of equipment currently used in the service industries to store, prepare, display, serve and dispose of food
  • access to current regulatory documents distributed by key federal, state or territory, and local government agencies, such as plain English legislative publications, and codes and standards outlining food safety requirements
  • access to a food safety program inclusive of policies and procedures
  • use of real ingredients and food items.

Methods of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess the practical skills and knowledge required to implement food safety procedures. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • direct observation of the candidate completing tasks in the food handling facility according to food safety policies and procedures
  • case studies to assess ability to react to a range of incidents where hazards have not been controlled
  • oral or written questions to assess knowledge of food safety legislative requirements, policies and procedures
  • oral or written questions to assess knowledge of food hazards and methods of controlling hazards
  • review of portfolios of evidence and third-party workplace reports of on-the-job performance by the candidate.

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended, for example:

  • any commercial cookery, commercial catering, patisserie, Asian cookery or food and beverage unit directly involving food preparation.

Assessing employability skills 

Employability skills are integral to effective performance in the workplace and are broadly consistent across industry sectors. How these skills are applied varies between occupations and qualifications due to the different work functions and contexts.

Employability skills embedded in this unit should be assessed holistically with other relevant units that make up the skill set or qualification and in the context of the job role.

Range Statement


The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording in the performance criteria is detailed below.

Policies and procedures  may relate to:

  • food receiving, storage, preparation, display, service and disposal
  • methods of food hazard control for each critical point
  • systematic monitoring of hazard controls and record keeping
  • personal hygiene, suitable dress and personal protective equipment and clothing
  • record maintenance
  • corrective actions when hazards are found not to be under control
  • pest control
  • cleaning and sanitation
  • equipment maintenance.

Food hazards  may be:

  • anything related to food, including work practices and procedures, that have a potential to harm the health or safety of a person
  • actual or potential
  • chemical, microbiological or physical
  • any food contaminated with chemical or microbiological elements
  • foods highly susceptible to microbiological contamination
  • food containing bacteria, moulds and yeast
  • food containing broken glass, metal or foreign objects
  • food containing chemicals and natural poisons
  • insects and vermin
  • processes where food is vulnerable to contamination including:
  • requirements for food to be touched by hand
  • requirements for re-thermalisation or defrosting
  • displays of food and buffets
  • working with temperatures that promote the rapid growth of micro-organisms.

Critical control points  are those where there is high risk of contamination or food spoilage, including:

  • receiving
  • storing
  • preparing
  • processing
  • displaying
  • packaging
  • serving
  • transporting
  • disposing.

Food safety monitoring  may involve:

  • monitoring and recording temperature of cold and hot storage equipment
  • monitoring and recording food temperatures using a temperature probe
  • checking and recording that food is stored within appropriate time limits of receipt of goods
  • visual examination of food for quality review
  • bacterial swabs and counts
  • chemical tests.

Incidents where food hazards are found not to be under control  may include:

  • food poisoning
  • customer complaints
  • misuse of single use items
  • stocks of out-of-date foodstuffs
  • spoilt or contaminated food
  • unclean equipment
  • existence of pests and vermin.

Food types  may include:

  • eggs
  • dairy
  • meat and fish
  • fruit and vegetables
  • dried goods
  • frozen goods.

Food prepared , served and sold to customers under other conditions  may involve:

  • displaying any type of food for self-service, such as:
  • buffets
  • salad bars
  • condiments
  • tea and coffee
  • providing drink dispensing equipment
  • pre-packaging food items
  • displaying and selling pre-packaged food.

Ensuring the safety of food served and sold to customers under other conditions  may involve:

  • supervising the display of food to prevent contamination by customers
  • removing contaminated food without delay
  • providing separate serving utensils for each dish
  • providing protective barriers
  • displaying food under temperature control
  • using packaging materials suitable for use on the particular foodstuff
  • ensuring that packaging is not damaged during packaging or display process
  • ensuring that damaged packaging does not allow contamination.

Items intended for single use  may include:

  • disposable cutlery, e.g. plastic or wooden spoons or stirrers
  • disposable plates, mugs, cups and bowls
  • individually packaged sugars
  • individually packaged condiments, e.g. tomato sauce
  • individually packaged jams and spreads
  • individually packaged serves of coffee, tea and whitener
  • face wipes and serviettes.

Maintenance to ensure cleanliness and safe operation of equipment  may involve:

  • removal of food waste
  • removal of grease
  • removal of dirt
  • removal of animal or pest waste and cleaning of affected area
  • recalibration of measurement and temperature controls.

Food identified for disposal  may be:

  • subject to recall
  • not safe, or suspected of not being safe, for consumption
  • destroyed
  • disposed of so that it cannot be used for human consumption
  • returned to supplier.

Unit Sector(s)



Competency field

Competency field 

Food Safety