Unit of competency details

SITXFSA201 - Participate in safe food handling practices (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Supersedes and is equivalent to SITXFSA001A - Implement food safety proceduresPrerequisite 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
Is superseded by and equivalent to SITXFSA002 - Participate in safe food handling practices• Equivalent • Unit updated to meet the Standards for Training Packages. 02/Mar/2016

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 18/Jan/2013

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 columnUsage RecommendationRelease
SIT50312 - Diploma of HospitalityDiploma of HospitalitySuperseded1-3 
SIT40412 - Certificate IV in Commercial CookeryCertificate IV in Commercial CookerySuperseded1-2 
SIT40613 - Certificate IV in Catering OperationsCertificate IV in Catering OperationsSuperseded
SIT60313 - Advanced Diploma of HospitalityAdvanced Diploma of HospitalitySuperseded
SIT40713 - Certificate IV in PatisserieCertificate IV in PatisserieSuperseded
SIT20213 - Certificate II in HospitalityCertificate II in HospitalitySuperseded
SIT40413 - Certificate IV in Commercial CookeryCertificate IV in Commercial CookerySuperseded
SIT40312 - Certificate IV in HospitalityCertificate IV in HospitalitySuperseded1-3 
SIT31112 - Certificate III in PatisserieCertificate III in PatisserieSuperseded1-2 
SIT30713 - Certificate III in HospitalityCertificate III in HospitalitySuperseded
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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 07/Aug/2013 
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Modification History

The version details of this endorsed unit of competency set are in the table below. The latest information is at the top.





Replaces and is equivalent to SITXFSA001A Implement food safety procedures.

Prerequisite 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.

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. It requires the ability to follow predetermined procedures as outlined in a food safety program.

Application of the Unit

This unit applies to all tourism, hospitality and catering organisations with permanent or temporary kitchen premises or smaller food preparation areas.

This includes restaurants, cafes, clubs, hotels, tour operators, attractions, function, event, exhibition and conference caterers, educational institutions, aged care facilities, correctional centres, hospitals, defence forces, cafeterias, kiosks, canteens, fast food outlets, residential caterers, in-flight and other transport caterers.

Safe food handling practices are based on an organisation’s individual food safety program. The program would normally be based on the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) method, but this unit can apply to other food safety systems.

It applies to food handlers who directly handle food. People at many levels use this skill in the workplace during the course of their daily activities, including cooks, chefs, caterers, kitchen hands and food and beverage attendants.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Food handlers must comply with the requirements contained within the Australia New Zealand Food Standards (ANZFS) Code (the Code).

In some states and territories businesses are required to designate a food safety supervisor who is required to be certified as competent in this unit through a registered training organisation.


Not applicable.

Employability Skills Information

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements and Performance Criteria

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

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

1. Follow food safety program.

1.1 Access and use relevant information from organisational food safety program.

1.2 Follow policies and procedures  in food safety program.

1.3 Control food hazards  at critical control points .

1.4 Complete food safety monitoring  processes and complete documents as required.

1.5 Identify and report non-conforming practices.

1.6 Take corrective actions within scope of job responsibility for incidents  where food hazards are not controlled.

2. Store food safely.

2.1 Select food storage conditions for specific food type .

2.2 Store food in environmental conditions that protect against contamination and maximise freshness, quality and appearance.

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

3. Prepare food safely.

3.1 Use cooling and heating processes that support microbiological safety of the food.

3.2 Monitor food temperature during preparation using required temperature measuring device to achieve microbiological safety.

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

4. Provide safe single use items.

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

4.2 Follow instructions for items intended for single use .

5. Maintain a clean environment.

5.1 Clean and sanitise equipment, surfaces and utensils.

5.2 Use appropriate containers and prevent accumulation of garbage and recycled matter.

5.3 Identify and report cleaning , sanitising and maintenance  requirements.

5.4 Dispose of or report chipped, broken or cracked eating, drinking or food handling utensils.

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

6. Dispose of food safely.

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

6.2 Dispose of food promptly to avoid cross contamination.

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • communication skills to report food safety hazards
  • literacy skills to:
  • read and interpret food safety program, including policies, procedures and flow charts that identify critical control points
  • complete documentation for monitoring food safety
  • numeracy skills to calibrate and use a temperature probe and calculate timings
  • problem-solving skills to identify and respond to routine food safety issues
  • planning and organising skills to coordinate a range of different food handling tasks to take account of food safety issues
  • self-management skills to take responsibility for food safety at an operational level.

Required  knowledge 

  • key features of federal, state or territory and local food safety compliance requirements as they impact workers at an operational level, including:
  • contents of national codes and standards that underpin regulatory requirements
  • reasons for food safety programs and what they must contain
  • local government food safety regulations and inspection regimes
  • consequences of failure to observe food safety policies and procedures
  • meaning of contaminant, contamination and potentially hazardous foods as defined by the Code
  • HACCP or other food safety system principles, procedures and processes as they apply to particular operations and different food types, including:
  • critical control points for the specific food production system and the predetermined methods of control, especially time and temperature controls used in the receiving, storing, preparing, processing, displaying, serving, packaging, transporting and disposing of food
  • main types of safety hazards and contamination
  • conditions for development of microbiological contamination
  • environmental conditions, including temperature controls, for storage
  • temperature danger zone and the two-hour and four-hour rule
  • contents of organisational food safety program, especially procedures and monitoring documents
  • equipment operating procedures, especially how to calibrate, use and clean a temperature probe and how to identify faults
  • choice and application of cleaning, sanitising and pest control equipment and materials
  • high risk customer groups, such as:
  • children or babies
  • pregnant women
  • aged persons
  • people with immune deficiencies or allergies.

Evidence Guide

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

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the ability to:

  • consistently use safe food handling practices in a range of different food handling circumstances
  • demonstrate knowledge of food safety program and requirements, including critical control points and methods of food hazard control for each critical control point.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure use of:

  • an operational food preparation area or commercial kitchen with the fixtures, large and small equipment and workplace documentation defined in the Assessment Guidelines; this can be a:
  • real industry workplace
  • simulated industry environment such as a training kitchen servicing customers
  • food ingredients and ready to eat food items
  • current plain English regulatory documents distributed by the national, state, territory or local government food safety authority
  • the Code
  • current commercial food safety programs, policies and procedures used for the management of food safety.

Method of assessment 

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

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

Guidance information for assessment 

The assessor should design integrated assessment activities to holistically assess this unit with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role, for example:

  • SITXFSA101 Use hygienic practices for food safety
  • any commercial cookery, commercial catering, patisserie, Asian cookery or food and beverage unit involving food preparation.

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, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Policies and procedures  may relate to:

  • cleaning and sanitation
  • hazards:
  • control methods for each critical control point
  • corrective actions
  • systematic monitoring of hazard controls and record keeping
  • equipment maintenance
  • food:
  • receiving
  • storage
  • preparation
  • display
  • service
  • disposal
  • personal considerations:
  • dress
  • hygiene
  • protective equipment and clothing
  • pest control
  • record maintenance
  • training.

Food hazards  may be:

  • actual or potential
  • chemical
  • insects and vermin
  • microbiological:
  • bacteria
  • natural poisons
  • moulds
  • yeast
  • physical:
  • broken glass
  • metal
  • foreign objects
  • process-related where food is vulnerable to contamination:
  • displayed food
  • need for food to be touched by hand
  • re-thermalisation or defrosting
  • processes involving temperatures that promote rapid growth of micro-organisms.

Critical control points  are specific steps where control of food hazards is essential to maintain the safety and suitability of the food, including:

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

Food safety monitoring  may involve:

  • bacterial swabs and counts
  • checking and recording that food is stored in appropriate timeframes
  • chemical tests
  • monitoring and recording food temperatures using a temperature measuring device accurate to plus or minus 1 degree Celsius
  • monitoring and recording temperature of cold and hot storage equipment
  • visual examination of food for quality review.

Incidents  may include:

  • customer complaints
  • existence of pests and vermin
  • food not under temperature control
  • food poisoning
  • misuse of single use items
  • spoilt or contaminated food
  • stocks of out-of-date foodstuffs
  • unclean equipment.

Food type  may include:

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

Safety  of food served and sold to customers under other conditions may be achieved by:

  • packaging control:
  • using packaging materials suited to foods
  • monitoring of packaging damage
  • protective barriers
  • temperature control
  • supervision of food displays
  • utensil control:
  • providing separate serving utensils for each dish.

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

  • drink dispensing
  • pre-packaged food items
  • self-service food.

Items intended for single use  may include:

  • disposable items:
  • cutlery
  • crockery
  • face wipes and serviettes
  • individually packaged items:
  • beverages
  • condiments
  • jams and spreads.

Cleaning ,  sanitising and maintenance  may involve:

  • cleaning:
  • dirt
  • food waste
  • grease
  • pest waste removal
  • maintenance:
  • recalibration of measurement and temperature controls
  • minor faults
  • sanitising:
  • eating and drinking utensils
  • food contact surfaces.

Food identified for disposal  must be held and kept separate and either:

  • clearly identified as 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
  • subject to recall.

Unit Sector(s)


Competency Field

Food Safety