Food business – fixed, mobile & temporary premises

You will need a licence to handle or prepare unpackaged food as part of your business. This applies to businesses whether they are in a fixed location, within mobile premises, or a temporary food stall (e.g. food stalls at markets or events).

You do not need a licence to sell:

  • pre-packaged food
  • whole fruit and vegetables
  • snack and other foods that are not potentially hazardous, e.g. chocolates, confectionary, dried fruit, cereals, uncooked pasta and spreads
  • drinks, such as tea, coffee, soft drinks and alcohol
  • primary produce (accredited producers).

Not-for-profit organisations

Not-for-profit organisations need a licence only when meals are served at a table with cutlery 12 or more times in a financial year.

Water carriers

Water carriers delivering drinking water must apply for a food licence for mobile premises.

Food safety programs

Some types of licensable food businesses are required to have an accredited food safety program. For example, if the business involves off-site catering, on-site catering, or if the business serves food to vulnerable people. For more information visit Food safety.

Licence period

Licences are valid until 31 August each year and are renewed annually.
Temporary food licences may be renewed annually and are valid until 31 August of each year, or may be issued for a one-off event (non-renewable).

Taking over an existing business

Food licences can't be transferred, so if you are taking over an existing business, you will need to submit a new licence application. We also recommend you apply for a health licence search to confirm the business' food licence is current and to ensure the current licence holder is complying with food safety regulations.

Complying with regulations

You and your staff are responsible for complying with all requirements of the Food Act 2006 and the Food Standards Code.

To help with food safety training, we offer free basic non-accredited training. For more information, visit Food safety.

For more information, contact our City Standards team on 07 5667 5987.

How to apply

Use one of the options below to apply for a food licence for:

  • fixed premises
  • mobile premises
  • temporary premises.

Development approval

We recommend you contact our Planning Enquiries Centre on 07 5582 8708 for advice on whether you will need development approval from us. Make sure your site has the appropriate approval before submitting your application.

Depending on the type, size and intended use of any permanent buildings and structures, building approval and certification from a building certifier may also be required.

Online

Step 1.Gather your documents

You will need to attach the following supporting information to your application:

  • food safety training/qualifications (if applicable)
  • food safety program (if required)
  • notice of written advice by a Queensland Health approved auditor (required if submitting a food safety program)
  • evidence of nil fee eligibility (mobile or temporary food business licence applications only, see application form for details).

If you are starting a new fixed or mobile business or are taking over an existing business where you have changed the fit-out, fixtures, fittings or equipment, you will also need to attach the following information to your application:

  • floor plan to scale detailing location, materials and dimensions of all equipment fixtures and fittings
  • cross-section drawings to scale detailing materials, dimensions, and junctions of surfaces/equipment
  • site plan detailing location of premises in regard to other premises and facilities
  • cooking and ventilation equipment details including types, energy type/rating and ventilation systems.

By email

Step 1.Gather your documents

You will need to attach the following supporting information to your application:

  • food safety training/qualifications (if applicable)
  • food safety program (if required)
  • notice of written advice by a Queensland Health approved auditor (required if submitting a food safety program)
  • evidence of nil fee eligibility (mobile or temporary food business licence applications only, see application form for details).

If you are starting a new fixed or mobile business or are taking over an existing business where you have changed the fit-out, fixtures, fittings or equipment, you will also need to attach the following information to your application:

  • floor plan to scale detailing location, materials and dimensions of all equipment fixtures and fittings
  • cross-section drawings to scale detailing materials, dimensions, and junctions of surfaces/equipment
  • site plan detailing location of premises in regard to other premises and facilities
  • cooking and ventilation equipment details including types, energy type/rating and ventilation systems.

Step 2.Complete the application form

Download and complete the relevant application form

Step 3.Send us your completed application form

Email to: mail@goldcoast.qld.gov.au

In person

Step 1.Gather your documents

You will need to attach the following supporting information to your application:

  • food safety training/qualifications (if applicable)
  • food safety program (if required)
  • notice of written advice by a Queensland Health approved auditor (required if submitting a food safety program)
  • evidence of nil fee eligibility (mobile or temporary food business licence applications only, see application form for details).

If you are starting a new fixed or mobile business or are taking over an existing business where you have changed the fit-out, fixtures, fittings or equipment, you will also need to attach the following information to your application:

  • floor plan to scale detailing location, materials and dimensions of all equipment fixtures and fittings
  • cross-section drawings to scale detailing materials, dimensions, and junctions of surfaces/equipment
  • site plan detailing location of premises in regard to other premises and facilities
  • cooking and ventilation equipment details including types, energy type/rating and ventilation systems.

Step 2.Complete the application form

Download and complete the relevant application form

Step 3.Visit one of our customer service centres

Submit your application at one of our customer service centres Monday to Friday between 8.15am and 4.30pm.

By mail

Step 1.Gather your documents

You will need to attach the following supporting information to your application:

  • food safety training/qualifications (if applicable)
  • food safety program (if required)
  • notice of written advice by a Queensland Health approved auditor (required if submitting a food safety program)
  • evidence of nil fee eligibility (mobile or temporary food business licence applications only, see application form for details).

If you are starting a new fixed or mobile business or are taking over an existing business where you have changed the fit-out, fixtures, fittings or equipment, you will also need to attach the following information to your application:

  • floor plan to scale detailing location, materials and dimensions of all equipment fixtures and fittings
  • cross-section drawings to scale detailing materials, dimensions, and junctions of surfaces/equipment
  • site plan detailing location of premises in regard to other premises and facilities
  • cooking and ventilation equipment details including types, energy type/rating and ventilation systems.

Step 2.Complete the application form

Download and complete the relevant application form

Step 3.Send us your completed application form

Post to:

City of Gold Coast
PO Box 5042
GCMC QLD 9726